This Young Entrepreneur Built A Tiny Manufacturing Business To More Than $3 Million In Revenue. Then The Pandemic Hit And He Had To Get Really Creative.
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Everything was going well for Apurva Batra, 31, founder of the manufacturing firm Flexible Pouches, when the pandemic hit. That's when he had to test his mettle to make it through an obstacle course of shipping challenges, rising price and shortages.
Apurva Batra, 31, built his business, Flexible Pouches, within a a very specialized, millionaire-next-door kind of niche: making attractive, retail-ready packaging for consumer goods at a price that small and midsize brands can afford. He makes the bags that might hold boxed pharmaceuticals or artisanal kale chips, for instance, targeting B2B clients in small and midsized businesses looking for attractive pricing. After founding Flexible Pouches in 2016, he grew it to $1 million in annualized revenue its first year.

By early 2020, with revenue at $3-3.5 million annually, Batra, a former engineer at Chevron in Houston, expanded what was originally a one-man business to three employees—transitioning into a category I call tiny businesses that make big money.

Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Costs for shipping containers skyrocketed, with containers that once cost $3,000 to $5,000 each now costing $15,000. Larger customers demanded preferential payment terms. Meanwhile, raw materials costs began to rise, and shipping delays became a fact of life. "If there's one word that can sum up the busines environment in 2022, it's shortages," says Batra.

Apurva Batra built his niche manufacturing…
Elaine Pofeldt
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