Arun GL, 27, an ex-sales manager of a corporate brand, turned to his entrepreneurial hand by setting up a high-tech mill, “Ente Mill“, that grinds mixed spices, flours, health mixes, oils, etc., in his hometown of Poojappura, Thiruvananthapuram in August 2022.
He started the venture inspired by his four-decades-old family entity “Janatha Mill” and inaugurated by Sri.V.R. Vinod IAS (Food and Safety Commissioner, Kerala).
He commenced his startup by selling his products to the famous Malayalam film actor Suraj Venjarammood.
Arun is the only son of his parents, Mr B. Gopakumar, a retired KSRTC driver, and Mrs Lathakumari. He has a younger sister, Aparna GL, who has completed her engineering and is currently working at Technopark.
He completed his full education in Thiruvananthapuram, completed his education at Government Boys Higher Secondary School, Thycaud, and earned his B.Com in Tax degree from Bethany College, Nalanchira.
After completing his degree, he shifted to Kochi and served a company for a couple of years as a sales executive. Later, he had to move back to his hometown in Trivandrum due to his mother, Lathakumari, ‘s sudden demise.
The whole family had shattered a lot due to his mother’s death, and Arun never thought of moving away from his home.
About the Launch of an Advanced Mill
As time passed and things started moving, Arun began to work for a company in Trivandrum itself as a sales executive and was later promoted to Area Sales Manager.
Additionally, in the late hours, he used to help his father at their family business, a traditional mill started in the early 1980s by his grandfather named “Janatha Mill”, which is a traditional Flour Rice and Oil mill.
A year later, his father got some health issues, and he was forced to leave his job and stick to looking after the mill full-time.
Being a passionate, hard worker, Arun always wants to be successful because of his hard work.
That is how he thought of launching his startup “Ente Mill.”
Interestingly his expertise in his family business is helping a lot in his new venture.
He had done thorough market research before launching his brand into the market.
Although there are flourished competitors in the new-age mill market, Ente Mill is making its mark through their USPs and hi-tech pieces of machinery and yet keeping everything simple.
He had started “Ente Mill” in his 200 sq. ft. personal space at the same time, while Janatha Mill worked in a 1200 sq. ft. space. He had to eliminate the fear of common people, as there is a mental block in consumer psychology that “big places are charging high prices.”
Arun’s mill in Poojappura is running its day-to-day operations in solar power. Since it’s not storing energy, the firm is contributing solar power to the KSEB ( Kerala State Electricity Board).
The pieces of machinery are directly imported from Rajasthan and their raw materials are delivered from Delhi, Ahmedabad, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
Additionally, the customers are provided with the facility to see the processing and grinding of the products live.
Arun has introduced “Ente Mill” as the mill that charges reasonably, probably one of the lowest prices in the market. The mill has the capacity to produce 200+ items.
The advanced mill provides 100% natural, non-preservative top-quality products such as flour, blended spices, oils, health mixes, and other fresh mill products. “Ente Mill” provides all ayurvedic powder, skincare, hair, and massage oils. Currently, the mill produces over 150 products. Additionally, the mill provides facilities for customers to bring their own products from home and get them processed in the mill.
The startup’s products have been delivered on a Pan-India basis.
Processing of “Ente Mill” Products
Before processing, the products are subjected to various levels of hygiene to ensure their safety.
The products will be washed in clean water and placed to get sunlight for several hours before they will be treated in an electric dryer and then taken to powder or oil the items.
Then, it will be packed in the best quality pouches that are available on the market.
Mission and Vision
The firm intends to improve the marketability of farm produce and to boost the creation of high-quality food processing infrastructure.
Additionally, they have already implemented the working model of reducing waste and capacity building of the producers and processors.
Arun desires to create an effective supply chain and significant direct and indirect employment generation.
In the longer run, the firm wants to become an infrastructure model for entrepreneurs in the food processing industry that will provide single-window support to launch tension-free startups, a snag-free operational environment and trouble-free raw material linkages.
Investment and Future Plans
The young entrepreneur had made an initial investment of Rs.50 lakhs through a personal bank loan. Fascinatingly, the mill has only one employee.
He intends to open another unit within a year, and the company aims to expand across India through collaborations and franchises within three years.
Arun has a motive to spread awareness about natural edible products and how healthy they can be used in day-to-day life as the market is filled with harmful preservatives. Through his venture, he is promoting local food shops in the city that do not use harmful preservatives or any other unhealthy ingredients.
He strongly believes that it’s high time to gain back the traditional practices of human consumption.
Arun also intends to install a solar dryer in his ancestral Janatha Mill in the future. He says the trust factor of Jantha Mill helped his venture as he was getting massive support locally and getting recognition at a national level.
Fascinatingly, the founder is the only person who looks after the technical part if any parts of the machinery get damaged and it doesn’t stop there, he is the one setup “Ente Mill” website with any prior web designing knowledge.
“There’s a crucial factor which can help you to keep moving with your startup, and that is patience.” “Be patient enough. “If you are doing something you like and if you are working hard for it, in the short run or long run, success will be the result,” Arun tells Startup Pedia.