Mumbai school team makes a bookmark at global challenge

Written By kom nampultig on Kamis, 16 April 2015 | 22.23

MUMBAI: Five students from the city have worked for six months to created unique bookmarks, which have won them a chance to fly to Seattle later this month.

Class VI, VII and VIII students of R N Podar Schol, Santacruz, along with their teacher, Varsha Bhambani, made over 250 corner bookmarks depicting traditional Indian art like Warli, Madhubani and Kalamkari for the Microsoft Global Enterprise Challenge. The team won from among 34 schools from across the world, of which five were from India.

The Bookmates team consists of Kurian David, Pranshu Jindal, Kalyanee Bhor, Avaanya Pandya and Sindhuja Suryanarayan. "We were given the bookmarks industry and soon began researching on types available in the market. We found that corner bookmarks were the most suitable and long lasting," said Kalyanee.

After several brain-storming sessions, the team decided to bring out Indian culture through their product. "We thought of making 3D or fluorescent bookmarks but wanted to ensure our country is represented," said Kurian. The students made the bookmarks out of paper, cloth and beads.

Once the product was finalized, the students created a budget and a pitch for their product and presented it to a panel. "The panel approved of Rs3,000 for the project, with and the students started off with," said Bhambani.

In the first batch, they created 75 bookmarks and sold them going door-to-door for Rs30 each. Soon, they were sold out and another batch was made. "We got feedback from customers that the bookmarks could be slimmer," said Avaanya. The students also worked on creating a brand identity for the product.

In the second phase, the price increased to Rs40. "We once again did a survey to find out if customers will pay more, and we got a positive response," said Pranshu. The team sold the bookmarks at a carnival at their school and made a profit of over Rs6,000.

The trip to Seattle isn't the end of the project for the students, who are confident of running their own business. "We plan to make products like files, rakhis and introduce more prints," said Sindhuja. "We also plan to tie up with an NGO and hold sessions with underprivileged children," she added.

The team will be felicitated at an education conference at the Microsoft headquarters in Seattle between April 28 and May 1.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/followceleb.cms?alias=Mumbai school team,global challenge,bookmark

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