Indian youth’s indulgence and interest in photography has been catalysed by social media and modern photography techniques. One can see a lot of youngsters wanting to pursue their love for photography either as a hobby or sometimes, as a successful business. The advantages and ease of doing business with small capital, high market demand, travel opportunities etc., makes photography an attractive business for a lot of people. This article focuses on the process of a photography start-up.
WHAT IS THE BUSINESS PROFILE OF PHOTOGRAPHY IN INDIA?
The photography business in the country is valued over Rs. 1 lakh crores and is continuously growing at the rate of 25-30% per annum. The use of modern technology has dramatically changed the entire industry, making the industry of film based photography totally obsolete. Modernisation has not only created opportunities for new companies to create a market for themselves but has also pushed major players in the photography business like Kodak and Konika to realise their need to constantly upgrade and improve in order to stay in the market. The competition in turn has benefited entrepreneurs making photography business start-ups ideal as they become less capital or training intensive.
HOW MUCH CAPITAL DO YOU NEED?
A person can start a photography business with a capital as small as Rs. 1 lakh to as high as Rs. 10 lakh, depending on its scale. Capital is mainly required for the equipment i.e. camera and lenses. The camera body may range from Rs. 50,000 to Rs. 3,00,000 and the cost of lens depends on the type of shots required by the person which starts from Rs. 20,000 and could go up to lakhs of rupees. Apart from all this, other investments include a place to establish a studio ( if needed ), lighting and other miscellaneous equipment, and advertising ( market or social ). Since, a decent photography start-up can be established within a capital of Rs. 10 lakhs, a lot of banks offer schemes such as the MUDRA Loan Scheme which can be availed by photographers/entrepreneurs even without any track records to start a photography business.
HOW TO REGISTER YOUR BUSINESS?
Most of the photography businesses have a turn over that lies under Rs. 40 lakhs which makes a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP), an ideal business entity to start a photography business. The entity makes compliance of business easy for the entrepreneur as it does not require any audit of accounts if the annual sales turnover is lower than Rs. 40 lakhs.
To form a LLP, at least two persons are needed. A person has to add a member of his/her family or friend with a minimal share of the profits, in case the business has a single entrepreneur.
Apart from the LLP registration, the entrepreneur is required to obtain a service tax registration for the photography business if and when the sales turnover crosses Rs. 9 lakh in a financial year. Once, the turnover crosses Rs. 10 lakhs, the entrepreneur has to start charging service tax from the clients at the rate of 14 % of the billed amount.
HOW CAN YOU BECOME SUCCESSFUL IN PHOTOGRAPHY?
New ideas, creativity and innovations in social media have paved the way for many young Indians to establish successful photography businesses in the country. One is well acquainted with the power that social media confers to an individual and in case of photographers; their pictures have to be displayed and shared in order to have a strong presence and marketing of their business and skills. Added to this, a person needs to create a decent website where people can see his/her work and if the website is listed under prominent photography or other event service provider websites, it would make sure that the photography business runs successfully.
Here are some names of Indian Photographers who have established successful businesses and made it large in the fields of photography:
- Radhika Raj
- Madhur Shroff
- Dinesh Kumble
- Tarun Khiwal
- Joseph Radhik