Welcome to the second in our series of blogs where you will get to know our co-founders. Over the next three weeks you will read more about the beginnings of Chakshu London and how we are different from the rest.
Surbhi is a qualified optometrist from London and loves to ski!
Why did you start Chakshu London?
Chakshu London is an amalgamation of ideas that we've had over a number of years. We've used the knowledge and skills we received from our degrees, the frustrations formed from our jobs and the principles we believe in in life to create this brand. We wanted to create a pleasant experience for customers and patients who bought glasses, offering the best as standard. All of our glasses are handmade in Italy, using Mazzucchelli acetate, which makes them so durable, lightweight and beautiful. I would often feel frustrated that customers would be disappointed with all add on costs that were required to make their glasses. Our lenses include all the additional extras, so you can leave it up to our combined experience of over 40 years in the optical industry to help explain what would be best for you.
How important is clinical excellence in Optometry?
There are a number of health and eye conditions that can be treated if caught early. With new technology this is becoming increasingly more possible. By having thorough regular sight tests, some sight loss can be prevented, leaving people with a better overall quality of life. Our vision is to create practices with the latest technologies, so that preventable sight loss can be caught early.
What are some of the challenges you face as a startup?
Startups require a constant inflow of money, time and energy, without seeing any rewards as such initially. Currently giving enough time to Chakshu is difficult, as all four of us are also working part-time. As with most startups you're entering an unknown territory, so there will always be a hurdle to overcome at each step, but I guess that is what makes it so exciting and unique!
What are your visions for the future?
Creating vision, by providing sight! One of the main reasons Chakshu (in Sanskrit meaning vision) was set up, was so that we could use some of our profits to help prevent sight loss, so that not having sight does not become a reason why it inhibits anyone to progress in life. Previously all four founders have held an eye camp, testing eyes on the underprivileged. We would love to be able to keep on doing this. Currently, 5% of all of our profits go to a UK based charity - Vision Care for Homeless People.
What are your hobbies and interests?
I love dancing and find it to be a great stress reliever. Just generally keeping fit is important to me, and I'm forever looking for the next big challenge after having ran the London Marathon last year for the Charity we currently support - Vision Care for Homeless People. I also love travelling - I've spent many nights researching places to visit!
What has been the best bit so far about having a start up?
I've always had a passion for being creative and Chakshu allows me to do just that. It creates a multifaceted career. No day is the same and you're always learning. Whether it's learning about marketing, increasing your knowledge in optics, getting to grips with editing websites or becoming creative with designs. Making your vision a reality also brings a deep sense of gratification.