Winners only emerge if there are sufficient hurdles for everybody to overcome, and although many give up, some decide to prosper. Edward Samarasekara, the Chief Executive Officer at EDYS, reminisces about when he invested just Rs.5000 and every tear and sweat he shed for the evolution of his company.
The business concept has never been a foreign subject to Edward, given that his grandfather was a prominent businessman, well known in society during the 1960s and 1970s. Growing up around business influences, the occurrences motivated him to end up with a career in the business field more than any other. However, choosing to follow in his father’s footsteps primarily, Edward acquired a legal education, practising as an Attorney-at-law for over five years. Over time, he moved out of the legal field to pay close and complete attention to his then small business.
The Sky Lantern he had brought down for his personal use and then decided to promote and sell was the turning point in his business-oriented mind. Thereon, he started bringing in more Sky Lanterns, eventually varying the products such as paper lanterns. The lantern-related business steps were followed for over a year and a half by the EDYS team before they started focusing on other industries and bringing down what catches the customer’s eye. The product ranges now vary from outdoor furniture, wedding decor, decor supplies, home-related supplies, etc. Fast forward to today, EDYS recently opened their first outlet with a wide range of products to choose from, stepping away from the ‘online business’ category and are on their fast-paced way towards conquering the world.
According to him, more industries than not were affected by the pandemic. Therefore, in response to the import restrictions, the EDYS team moved to industries where items could still be imported and sold. This has led to their branding as a home goods store over anything else. In Edwards’ view, they were initially promoted more as an internet store. As a result, their loyal customers did not have a perfect way of going through the goods they were ready to offer. He believes that the involvement in social media such as Facebook and Instagram has worked wonders for them in terms of customer reach and engagement. EDYS is hastily developing their website, opening more and more doors to fulfil customer needs and wants.
Edward believes that the times people have spent at home and on their phones during the pandemic, such as June or July, have been peak business times. However, he says that more than customer satisfaction, customer happiness is the strength behind what has EDYS vibrating. Edward shared the joy of delivering customers with goods they always wanted but were never sure they could have.
Though he was born into a business family, it was him alone that developed this business. He recounts that capital was the main issue. With small vendors and one step at a time, it has taken EDYS a considerable time to grow enough to invest in anything other than Sky Lanterns. The days when customers had needs that EDYS could not cater are far behind them. Adding to that, the instability of the government and their tendency to turn things around overnight does worry them. According to Edward, Christmas preparations have been planned for over six months, usually the merriest time for EDYS’ customers with the launch of their Christmas collection. So the team is now dreading the news that stops them from importing Christmas time-related products too. Therefore, planning, he says, is never easy or dependable.
According to Edward, honesty and integrity are what has allowed the business to flourish as it has. The pure joy of providing customers with more than they expected and with goods they never thought they would see anywhere but on Pinterest overpowers everything else. EDYS always strives to deliver the best at the offered price, adding value to their investments.
Benchmarking global home good stores, EDYS is always concerned about where the goods come from and who makes them. Edward says that they look forward to being a one-stop shop that caters to every home and decor need a customer may have.
“I believe that if you’re happy with what you do, you know, you can achieve anything you want,” Edward added, saying that if he did not love what he did enough, he would not have been where he is now, being a fantastic leader to his team and making everyone’s colourful dreams come true.