Born in Dera Ismail Khan, Bushra Latif grew up seeing how difficult motherhood was for women among her friends. Given the apparent lack of stores selling baby food, children’s clothing and baby care products in her area, most women had to rely on male family members to travel to the larger cities for the supplies they needed for their children. For young mothers, this was more than a minor annoyance.
“I remember my sister raising two small children and a newborn baby. It was hard for her to find some time for herself because she was always worried about the things the children needed on a daily basis,” says Latif.
The young entrepreneur knew she had to do something for the women in her ward. In 2021, after months of thinking about a credible business model, Latif launched Nani. He says the idea began to sprout with the start of the coronavirus lockdowns.
While Nani The platform appears to be primarily an online marketplace featuring several brands of clothing, footwear, feeding equipment, bath accessories, bedding and other products aimed at children, with a focus on providing content and workshops for mothers and children on childcare babysitting, learning and storytelling.
“I have been collecting my idea for many months. I couldn’t think of anything else. After initial research, I realized there was an urgent need for a dedicated digital space for mothers across the country,” says the entrepreneur. “It was a simple idea and necessary; so I decided to run with it,” says Latif.
“Any business idea must be strongly profit oriented. That doesn’t change the fact that there is a vision and determination behind it to make an impact and change things for the better,” Latif assures.
“While staying at Dera Ismail Khan, I noticed that motherhood, an already exhausting job, was made even more difficult by the lack of support systems. This observation prompted me to find a practical solution for all women in the country,” she says.
Latif says she was soon inundated with orders and feedback not only from major cities like Lahore, Islamabad and Karachi, but also from Gilgit, Azad Kashmir and her hometown within weeks of the beta testing phase.
“I remember reading messages from women thanking us after receiving the order. Some said they spent days looking for a specific infant formula or item for their children that they couldn’t get their hands on. Often their orders were canceled by other suppliers because they could not deliver to remote areas,” he recalls.
Latif talks about the main mission Nani it was intended to help mothers make informed decisions as carers, as well as provide them with the knowledge about childcare that they may lack. “Nani includes a modern, developed and empathetic grandmother character who is a guide for young mothers. Instead of judging and criticizing Nani gently informs his “daughters” how they can become attentive, loving and confident parents. Parenting isn’t easy, and the last thing a young couple needs is to be teased by family members. They need a safe space. By NaniI want to ensure that,” he says.
After starting Nani Kay Totkay, Shagufta Kay Masayl and Nani ki KahaniyanLatif is looking forward to the new year. Nani Kay Totkay includes local, home remedies. Nani ki Kahaniyan are stories that parents can use for their children as they put them to bed and Shagufta Kay Masayl there is a dialogue where Nani gives Shaguft advice on her problems.
Having a soft launch behind him, the entrepreneur consults with his team to build and develop the platform. “I started from scratch,” says Latif. “Now I have a team of eight dedicated and hard-working employees. However, this is only the beginning. I feel like we’ve just scratched the surface.”