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Published on: Feb. 28, 2021, 1:07 p.m.
Transcending time and space, Kadence makes music
  • Kadence has a mission to make music a part of everyone’s life

By Yeshi Seli. Assistant Editor, Business India

‘If music be the food of love, play on,’ said William Shakespeare. And, people have been doing it ever since. And, music kept many across the globe occupied, when the lockdown weighed heavily during the pandemic. People listened to music and even began to pick up instruments to play for the very first time. 

“Music has been an integral part of India for centuries and it’s for this reason that many households now have musical instruments. It is for the same reason that, despite Covid, we have registered an increase in the number of people buying our musical instruments,” says Siddhartha Jhunjhunwala, founder, Kadence – a musical instruments manufacturing company.

Based in Bengaluru, Kadence was set up in 2017. The company makes 40 types of instruments in 40 different categories, with the guitar and ukulele being the most popular. In 2020-21, Kadence’s turnover was Rs100 crore and the company expects it to double to Rs200 crore in the next financial year. 

“I came to Bengaluru in 2010 as a bachelor’s degree student in Business Studies in Christ College (from my hometown, Jamshedpur) and, having loved the city so much, I decided to stay on. After college, I got into selling coffee vending machines for corporates and then diversified into doing lighting for music concerts by setting up a company called Cresurge Ltd, at an investment of Rs8 lakh,” says the 37-year-old Jhunjhunwala.

The origin

Even as Cresurge was doing well, Jhunjhunwala realised that there was an opportunity in manufacturing musical instruments in India. “In 2015, we decided to source musical instruments from different countries, such as Indonesia and Italy. This is how Kadence – which means rhythm – came into being.” It was set up in Adhur near Hoskote in Karnataka in 2017, at an investment of Rs80 lakh. To begin with, the company assembled musical instruments by sourcing different types of wood and other components from across the world. 

“We sell about 1,000 instruments every day online and offline. In December 2020, we began to sell our instruments in the US via Amazon and Walmart. We have been selling between 50 and 60 instruments in the US every day. That is big news for us,” says Jhunjhunwala, adding that they would soon be adding more instruments for sale in the US.

“AR Rahman, Vishal Bhardwaj, Shreya Ghosal, et al, have all tagged us and are seen playing our instruments. Virat Kohli too strummed a Kadence ukulele during lockdown. For us, these are endorsements – from the best in the industry,” adds Jhunjhunwala. 

Kadence has been featured among Amazon’s best-selling new guitars and has achieved a 4.8 rating. It has an in-house industrial design team and sources its products from Indonesia, Italy, China and the US. Its manufacturing unit is in Bengaluru. “We check for quality, then assemble and ship,” says Jhunjhunwala. The sale takes place through its network of 150 dealers and distributors, four company-owned stores (in Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Goa, and Delhi) and e-commerce platforms, including Amazon and Flipkart.

Each SKU is differently priced. While the Ukulele starts from Rs2,000, the guitars range around Rs5,743. The company also makes accessories available. It got its first customer through e-commerce platform Snapdeal. Since then, the company has been using various marketing methods to build a community of music lovers.

With the belief that music transcends the concepts of time, borders and cultures, and truly connects all mankind, leaving us better versions of ourselves, Kadence has a mission to make music a part of everyone’s life. Kadence works with over 2,000 artists every year through collaborations for different activities like open music nights, music videos, social media engagements, workshops, college events and radio shows. According to estimates, about 2 lakh people use Kadence musical instruments.

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