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The story behind Menaka Bhandary’s startup: Blown – A one-of-a kind premier luxury salon and wine-bar

Let’s uncover the startup story behind Menaka Bhandary’s startup – BLOWN – one-of-a one kind of luxury salon and wine bar.

Menaka’s life before BLOWN

Menaka Bhandary - blown
Menaka Bhandary

Menaka Bhandari, a Bangalorean at heart and a graduate from the Christ University, she started her car wash service with a group of friends in the neighborhood at the age of 13, which was just the beginning. A few years later Menaka successfully set up a jewelry exhibition with friends. Grew connections and then dabbled into the world of fitness, product, and services marketing.

The Initial Journey towards BLOWN

Being very passionate about the health and fitness space, shortly after college Menaka joined Zela Healthcare clubs as a manager in the marketing department after Zela Menaka joined the Narang Group, where she handled the marketing and the events for South India, she then joined Active Holiday company as business development manager.

Menaka worked for about seven years before striking out on her own by launching BLOWN – a niche offering dedicated to haircuts, blow Dry services, nail art, and eye extension services.

What is the startup about?

BLOWN - Website Screenshot
BLOWN – Website Screenshot

Blown is a unique concept of one-of-a one kind of luxury space that offers its customers world-class hair and beauty treatments. The brand primarily focuses on providing hair grooming and styling services, including cut and color, among other things, nail art and makeup.

The startup is associated with international beauty essential brands. The in-house team of experts equipped to get customers ready-to-go in a wink. For those not in a hurry, the salon has a collection of international wines that helps alleviate mood with a unique selection of French, South African, Argentinian, Chilean, and more.

Check out BLOWN’s official website here.

Idea and inspiration behind BLOWN

Menaka, a creative thinker with a keen eye for market trends, noticed that business was booming for the grooming industry in India. New brands were popping up with unique concepts and USP.

However, there was no unique distinction among each brand, each recycling the same basic model. During her travel, she saw what some well-known international brands were doing in this space, which gave her a window of opportunity to create a place that delivered an all-round service experience for customers, leading to the inception of BLOWN as a premier luxury salon and wine-bar.

Check out BLOWN’s official website here.

Challenges faced in the outset.

Not having a beauty background was the biggest challenge she faced while approaching technicians and stylists who worked with successful brands.

Blown, being the very first venture, had to deliver something truly exceptional and unique to stand up amongst the tremendous competition in the industry.

Another major challenge Menaka faced was acquiring a Wine license, in a male-dominated country like India, she spent days in the excise department just trying to get an appointment with the concerned person. With all the documents and procedures in place, it was still a massive struggle as a woman.

Recent Collaborations of the Startup

Collaborations are crucial to a business. Over the last couple of years, the company had the privilege of partnering with some of the best brands in the industry – Kerastase, Balmain, Loreal, and others. Each of them brings something unique and yet complementary to the partnership. And at Blown, we have learned so much from each of these experiences.

Vision and Growth of the company

The company has the vision to be known for a great ambiance combined with world-class service standards. These are the foundations on which Blown’s success was slowly but surely built.

The company has flourished well over the years and recently and opening its third outlet on BEL Road, Bangalore, and looking to open at least 1-2 new locations by the end of 2020.