Sanna Vohra was at her friend’s sister’s wedding when she had the realisation that just because every bride-to-be can’t have a wedding planner, doesn’t mean she shouldn’t have one. And it’s turned out to be a realisation that changed not only her own life but that of women throughout the country. Sanna is the 26-year-old founder of The Wedding Brigade – the one-stop-shop for ALL your wedding needs. And when we say all, we really mean it. “We are the only portal in India that offers content, products and services. We offer everything – from wedding trends to medical advice to get before your wedding to different ways to style a dupatta on your wedding day!”, Sanna grins.
A graduate in Economics from Brown University, she had her first brush with entrepreneurship at the age of 18. She explains, “I started a restaurant discounting company with a few friends. I had so much fun building it. Even after I graduated and started working at Morgan Stanley in New York, I knew that eventually I would come back to entrepreneurship.” The seeds for The Wedding Brigade were sown rather randomly, “I was in India on a holiday, and attending a wedding. During the preparation, the bride was going through so many websites, email chains, word documents with pictures pasted onto it. It made me realise that wedding planning in India is so disorganized. It gave me an idea, and I decided to move to India in 2014 and started the process of building what’s now The Wedding Brigade.” In 2016, The Wedding Brigade received its first round of funding. A year later, it reported a tenfold growth in revenue. This year, Sanna wants to focus on building an app that will help bridal couples plan and their friends plan the whole wedding together, as well as building an online community for to-be brides.
Everything you see on her portal is thoughtfully curated for the millennial bride. It’s evident that the recipe for The Wedding Brigade’s success is Sanna’s crystal clear vision and “all-in” attitude. “When I moved back I realised, in this kind of game you cannot have a backup option. You have to be all in,” she smiles. What does Sanna do when she’s not running India’s only full-stack wedding portal? “I recently started playing in this football league in Bandra. It’s so much fun, but it’s gotten more competitive than it used to be!” she laughs, before adding, “I also have a book club with some of my friends. We meet once a month, but it ensures I am constantly reading something that isn’t related to work.” Sanna makes it a point to have activities outside of work, “You need a mental break! You can’t keep thinking about the same thing 24x7!”
Sanna is particularly careful about managing stress. “When I was at Morgan Stanley, I would work 14 to 16 hours every day. The first signs of stress started showing on my skin. I started seeing a dermatologist. Now, I use a toner twice a day. I make sure I go to bed with a clean face. I use a good makeup remover, cleanser and a moisturiser that’s fragrance-free and really uncomplicated,” she explains. Skincare, for Sanna, is a commitment. “I stick to my routine even when I am traveling. It’s takes a lot of effort. But honestly, it’s more stressful to have bad skin.”
Finally, we ask Sanna what would her advice to budding entrepreneurs be? Her reply is prompt, “Be clear about the problem you want to solve. Know exactly how you’re going to win and what makes you different. Be cost-efficient.”