Tamil Nadu

This entrepreneur made the right choice

TUNING IN: Muthulingam (centre) at his instrument assembly workshop.

TUNING IN: Muthulingam (centre) at his instrument assembly workshop.  

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When most self-employed aspirants settle for a tailoring unit or snack stall, here is a young entrepreneur with an offbeat start-up that assembles musical instruments.

V. Muthulingam, a native of Tindivanam, ventured into the business of making musical instruments with the help of funds and mentoring from the Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust (BYST), an organisation committed to promoting entrepreneurship among the youth.

Today, he runs a fairly successful enterprise from his showroom at Vadapalani here. With a turnover of over Rs.9.60 lakh, the young entrepreneur has provided employment to six youths, who have been trained in assembling instruments such as the mridangam, tabla and violin.

Mr. Muthulingam's entrepreneurial zeal won him the Citi Micro Entrepreneur Award 2009. “The mentoring at BYST helped me a lot, especially in getting through lean times,” he says.

On his BYST mentor's tip, he also runs music classes in a rented room near his shop utilising the services of four teachers and undertakes service and repair of instruments.

A polytechnic graduate in mechanical engineering, Mr. Muthulingam worked in a plant of an automotive major before deciding to start his own business. He was confident of utilising the skills he had acquired during apprenticeship at a musical instrument unit in Mandaveli.

Through a friend's reference, he approached BYST for a loan in 1983. Soon, he set up Sabari Musicals on a Rs.2-lakh loan and is today one of the success stories from the BYST.

His clients include musical instrument shops in the city and other States. There are only about 50 exponents of percussion instruments in the city.

Instruments are sometimes rented out for film shoots or annual day celebrations of schools. “Orders come mainly through word-of-mouth references,” he says.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 7:55:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/This-entrepreneur-made-the-right-choice/article16578457.ece

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