The Sister Duo that went from being Accidental Enterpreneurs to ruling the Handbag Industry in India

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Oceana Clutches is a three-year-old premium brand from India. The products are both cruelty-free and eco-friendly. The co-founded company aspires to create a balance between elegance, sustainability, and cost-effectiveness. Oceana is a brand that provides a wide range of handbags and clutches in a variety of materials. The bags are absolutely exquisite and a true piece of art.

After a successful business with a chain of pharmacies all over Mumbai, the founders, Rima Kapadia and Rashi Maniar, decided to do something that would allow them to explore their creative side and fulfil their desire for personalised products. Oceana Clutches began as a creative outlet and quickly blossomed into a successful business.

Rima Kapadia, who possesses a degree in commercial art and photography, is in charge of the creative side, while Rashi Maniar (Co-founder) is in charge of the financial and managerial aspects. They refer to themselves as “accidental entrepreneurs.” The outpouring of support from friends and family was overwhelming and gratifying when they made the bags for a private celebration. As a result, they made the decision to turn their art  into a passion- driven business.

Oceana Clutches was launched in 2019 and soon became a cult favorite. At events, everyone from A-listers like Alia Bhatt, Sara Ali Khan, Shilpa Shetty Kundra, and others to successful instagram influencers like Masoom Minawala, Komal Pandey, Roshni Bhatia, and others were spotted carrying an Oceana handbag.

Rima and Rashi were motivated to develop their own luxury brand after witnessing India’s love for global brands. They also wanted to include Indian culture into their business. They wanted to set an example as an Indian brand that creates ecologically responsible items using sustainable indigenous resources that are linked with luxury. Because they wanted their bags to say “Made in India,” they made it a point to support Indian artisans.

Oceana clutches provide an array of options in the bags category, for example, their voguish marble clutches made out of resin and acrylic, totes and satchels made of vegan plant leather, and their batwas and potlis that are hand beaded and crafted beautifully.

Oceana’s bags, according to the founders, should be more than just an accessory; they should be a reflection of the clients’ personalities. Their items are customised to each customer’s needs, making them one-of-a-kind and expressing the owner’s individuality. The brand’s two distinguishing features are customisation and on-the-spot customization. Customers can have their names/initials etched in 2D/3D customization. They cater to bulk orders for birthday parties, wedding celebrations, and other occasions in addition to one-to-one special creations.

In an interview with Downtown Mirror, Rima Kapadia and Rashi Maniar, Co-Founders of Oceana clutches reveals their path of success…

1. What skills do you have that will help you be successful in this business?

The ability to adapt, learn and grow each day is the greatest skill anyone in business can develop. While a plethora of skills are required right from creative to managerial, what’s most important is to keep your head on your shoulders and be committed to widening your horizons every single day. It’s no wonder that they rightly say – business is art! 

2. What strategies do you use to make a positive impression on customers?

We simply put them first no matter what. We try our best to see through their eyes and let that guide us in all our business decisions. Especially in the retail space, our only touch point essentially is our interaction with our loyalists. Their feedback is most valuable and is put into practice almost instantly at Oceana. 

3. What is the purpose of your coffee shop and store?

Striving to provide everything that’s never-seen-before we wanted to create a haven for the ones who want to unwind. One may choose to unwind with a cup of coffee, a wholesome meal or some retail therapy, all we have really done is bring all of those together under one roof. Our customers love coming in and spending a day with us for the very same reason and we’re forever grateful that our vision struck a chord with them! 

4. What gives you the idea to keep reinventing yourself?

Reinventing is the name of the game in todays day and age. If there’s anything the last two years have taught us it is to adapt to reality as quickly as possible, so how can we possibly not do that at work? Oceana as a brand is quick to manoeuvre and is committed to bring its clients products that are in line with the times or even ahead of them. Think fashionable, trend driven yet practical and wearable when you think of us! 

Now, post pandemic, since events are being organised, all the lovely celebrities are enthusiastically being papped with Oceana bags at various red carpet and wedding events. This gives us the inspiration to keep creating and reinventing  ourself. 

5. What is the concept of your store?

To answer your question in one word – Candyland! We wanted to create an experience more than anything. It’s like walking into the closet of your dreams that’s easy going, chic, fun and vibrant. The store reflects the personalities of our founders as well as sets the right tone for customers and celebrities alike to walk in to. PS: For all you Instagram fanatics, we’ve got an in-house photo op too!

The store sports a perfect combination of chic and elegant interior Oceana’s store is located in the heart of Juhu. It sports a perfect blend of chic and elegant interiors with colours such as pink, black, metallic, an element of gold and a pop of fuchsia, The whole store is lit up during the day with natural light gleaming in from their life sized mullioned windows. the infamous, Oceana throne, which was mounted with the idea of feeling bold, confident and empowered has hosted many big names in the Fashion, Bollywood and TV industry like Shweta Bachchan-Nanda, Esha Deol, Hina Khan, Ishita Dutta, Madhu, Farah Khan, and many more. The store is an experience in itself where you can design, customise and personalize your favourite bag or clutch.  

6. What made you choose your store’s location in Juhu?

In the midst of the action, yet a secluded space of it’s own – that’s what Juhu is for us and that’s what we envisioned in a forever home for Oceana Clutches. The brand prides itself in having something for everyone and what better than setting up shop in a place that’s full of young dreamers as well as the who’s who of the city. 

7. How do you advertise your shop and store?

While there are very many ways to market and advertise your offerings, we have been blessed to have found success in many of the things we as a brand opted for. What’s helped us is a combination of Word Of Mouth, Social Media and Going Digital Through Our Website. Another important factor in marketing is Being Seen On The Right Socialities, A List Celebs & Bloggers at the right events. We have had the good fortune of dolling up most of the big names and that’s played a huge role in taking our marketing game up a notch. 

8. What was your mission at the start of your business?

Our mission with Oceana Clutches has always been to be the Indian Clutches Brand that made its mark everywhere both Nationally and Internationally. We strive every single day towards our ‘Make In India’ mission that will help us take Indian handmade products to the world. We truly believe we are onto something big and it’s a matter of time until India takes over the Global Fashion Game in every aspect! 

9. What products and services does Oceana offer?

We’d like to believe we are the definition of Bag Heaven. Housing everything from totes, to wristlets and clutches. Spanning across materials from vegan leather to resin. Offering all kinds of personalisation and customizing gift hampers, everything to do with a bag of any kind is everything we do. We are also looking to expand and launch a mens category very soon. 

10. Where do you see your Oceana store in five years?

We see Oceana Clutches becoming a house hold name and the most preferred Homegrown Indian label for bags and clutches. Like we are today, we aim to be forever loved by our loyalists and celebrities alike. 

11. What do you like most about Oceana clutches and bags?

The one thing that makes Oceana Clutches relatable and enjoyable is that they are super versatile and offer great value for money. Personalisation is a key feature that they have managed to provide across a wide category of bags. 

12. How does your store stack up against market competitors?

“Your biggest competition is you!” these are five words that hold the truest meaning for us. We strive to better ourselves each day and outside of that, healthy competition and inspiration is always a given. 

13. How do you define success in your store business?

We tasted real success when some of the most notable celebs very humbly walked into our store and purchased the bags on multiple occasions. Aside from that, we believe that our customers are the bearers and the reason for our success. We couldn’t have done it without them having our back and loving everything we put out! In fact, when a client mentions that photos don’t do justice to the bags – it makes our day!