Kapunu Home inspires homeowners to live beautifully with customised minimalist interior and furniture designs
Kapunu Home inspires homeowners to live beautifully with customised minimalist interior and furniture designs|EastMojo image
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How self-taught Naga interior designer Khroku Nuh built a business empire

Kapunu Home inspires homeowners to live beautifully with customised minimalist interior and furniture designs

Pritisha Borthakur

The interior design of a home defines its beauty and allure. When we think about captivating designs that give our home that extra aesthetic edge, we think about Kapunu Home. Founded by Nagaland-born interior designer Khroku Nuh, Kapunu Home caters to every interior design need with a minimalist approach; they offer customised interior designs, manufacturing studios as well as furniture designs.

Nuh is passionate about interior design and in bringing creative designing ideas from the imagination straight to your home. Being the eldest of four, Nuh was always fascinated by beautiful designs and architectural structures. He was always flipping through furniture and design magazines and was intrigued by the designs he saw. He would go on to obtain an MBA degree in marketing and human resource from Indian Institute of Modern Management (IIMM) Pune, and an executive MBA degree from Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Lucknow

He proceeded to work for eight years as a corporate executive and freelanced for another four years. During his time as a freelancer, Nuh prepared to take on the UPSC civil service and was successful in the written exams. The interview, however, proved difficult, as he could not make the final list. After failing to make the final list for five consecutive times, Nuh consulted for several businesses while trying to figure out his next step. He almost gave up until he stumbled on an article about interior designers and celebrity architects in 2016. Noticing most of them were self-taught gave Nuh the breakthrough he desperately needed to begin his own company.

Very few successful designers can boast about being fully self-taught, Nuh prides himself in that fact. Even without a formal college degree in design, Nuh has built something truly phenomenal, with an initial investment of just Rs 20,000! With other interior designers, architects and stylists assisting him, Nuh is steadily building a world renowned brand. He says, "Kapunu Home is a part of Kapunu Group. We have been making furniture since 1998, and currently we are into interior/exterior design, furniture manufacturing and construction with a complete end-to-end bespoke solution for any residential and small commercial projects.”

"My two brothers Azolo Nuh and Khrozo Nuh are heading the furniture (Kapunu Furnitech) and modular kitchen & furniture (Vivid Home) segments respectively. Till date we have served clients all over the country with our base in Dimapur and New Delhi," he adds.

Nuh's eye for detail, which is important to be a successful designer, is a product of his family. He draws inspiration from his father who has wide and deep knowledge of wood and machineries. He highlights his upbringing as a key contributor to the nature of design he does. He believes to achieve beauty you do not need too much, as beauty lies in simplicity.

But running a business like this is not without some challenges. For his company, some hitches are inevitable. "Like any small business, cash flow/resource management and recruiting are few of the many… This definitely has to be the 2020 lockdown projects done so far and those in the process currently. Even with the easing of lockdown, what used to take 2-3 days normally now stretches for almost a month. Most of our manufacturing partners had to shut down businesses and some are barely making it. Add to it, the client’s decision making process", he says.

According to Nuh, designing residential homes carry a higher level of personal involvement than designing commercial properties. Businesses face challenges at every turn. For design inspiration, Nuh studies Japanese, German and Scandinavian minimal design concepts; while he browses through platforms like Architectural Digest, Pinterest, Instagram and Elle Décor to stay current on the latest trends in the world of design.

In promoting a unique brand such as Kapunu Home, certain characteristics form the bedrock on which the company is built. They include; elegance, simplicity and minimalism. These characteristics are reflected in every area of the company, from designs to customer service, while transparency and clarity are the cherry on the cake.

Establishing a product collection is the next step for many design companies. Speaking of his company taking that next decisive step, Nuh says, "Yes, we already have a plan. In fact, we are already subtly doing that right now with our brand, Kapunu. We design and manufacture our own furniture lines; our factory is in Dimapur. But yes the dream is to make it on the larger scale and wider base. We envision entering the soft furnishing line very soon," he enthuses.

Nuh has learnt many lessons since starting out. For him, the biggest is humility. His business has taught him how to respect every person or job he comes across as everyone is trying to survive in their own way. When he isn't making beautiful designs, Nuh loves engaging in other mental and physical activities such as, playing basketball, listening to podcasts, reading and spending time with his family.

As the pandemic continues ravaging businesses around the world, Nuh elucidates on how his company is currently surviving in the midst of it all. "Times are definitely tough, no business is spared. Most of our projects were halted, however, we are up-skilling ourselves and working even harder and smarter than we used to. During the complete lockdown phase we were able to maximise our ‘No-Contact Design Service’ and we see the feasibility and the practicality even as we transition back to what used to be normal before. We capitalised on our marketing reach and network which is our strength.”

"We have executed a decent number of projects even during these 4-5 months of lockdown. And we are grateful to all our patrons who believe in our work and are kind enough to pass the word around and refer us to friends and families,” Nuh adds with a smile

For designers aspiring to launch into the interior decor industry full time, Nuh highlights three important things they must note. "Firstly, they must be willing to start small and work on as many businesses as they can. Secondly, studying the industry before venturing into it is important. Finally, it is important to strategise and focus on the long term basis," he advises.

Talking about his dream projects, “I want to build a sustainable eco-friendly home at our ancestral land in my native village Thetsumi, Phek district, Nagaland.”

Nuh is a strong believer in utilising talent ahead of a degree. He believes talent offers a unique advantage that degrees do not necessarily do. He also believes no matter the level of talent for designing you may possess, hard work is a key ingredient for success.

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