An ardent style and fashion connoisseur with innate business acumen, Veena Ashiya is a 3rd generation entrepreneur. Helming Monrow shoes and accessories as the Founder & Chief Energy Officer, a homegrown brand that pledges to deliver fashion and comfort. With a consumer-centric approach and a passion to revolutionize the customer experience, Veena launched the brand in 2016. Under her great leadership, the brand became a pioneer in launching the house leisure footwear category in India.
Roles and responsibilities: Veena at Monrow plays the cíeative and business mind of the bíand. She lends her expertise to the design output as well as operations creating a sustainable venture in this competitive environment of the D2C sector.
Education: Veena Ashiya acquired her formal education from the National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT). She excelled in her academics and scholastic activities at the institute. She became a successful fashion entrepreneur all by her experience in the industry with all her dedication and inclination towards fashion.
Career: Being a fashion enthusiast since childhood, Veena always aspired to become ‘A Business Woman’. To support and nurture her robust vision, she further strengthened her knowledge in the fashion and lifestyle industry by securing a formal degree from the National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT). Veena has relevant industry experience with successful stints from some globally celebrated brands like Tommy Hilfiger and Versace from New York.
Brand Inception and Presence: Being an alumnus of NIFT, Veena discovered the entrepreneur in her because of her sheer love for shoes. She acquired in-depth knowledge about every aspect of shoemaking including comfort after working with prominent brands abroad. She then went to bring the same experience and comfort to the Indian market. Veena moved back to India in 2011 and started the bootstrapped venture Monrow in 2016 with an initial investment of INR. 2Cr which was later topped up by INR 2Cr by the founder. It was in association with Future Group as its retail partner. Monrow sold more than 20,000 pairs of shoes within 15 months of its launch.
Under Veena’s leadership, the brand has become one of the fastest growing D2C brands and saw double-digit margins on a unit economics basis with an annual run rate of INR 6Cr within just 2 years of inception. The brand successfully raised a funding of INR 6Cr in early 2021 from Bloom, 9Unicorns, and Yukti Securities to expand its offering to tier 2 and tier 3 cities with more offline stores.
With this growth rate, Veena aims to hit triple-digit sales figures by 2025. In alignment with this vision, the brand has partnered with some of the biggest retail companies in the country like Future Group, Reliance Industries, and specialized shoe retailers like Centro. The brand’s online partners include Myntra, Jabong, Flipkart, and Amazon.