OBBC Spotlight On SainBags


July 2 2020

The Journey of Sainbags

Shradha Rungta

My partner, Husain Baomar, and I started SainBags in January 2018. Our mission was to provide an eco-friendly alternate to plastic bags. We were environmentalists at heart with an entrepreneurial spirit, tired of the waste created by plastic bags. We decided there had to be a better way.

The journey of our partnership started 2015, when we were brought together by flowers! I had founded Saesha flowers and was running it in Indonesia and met Husain Baomar, the owner and founder of the Enchanted Garden, an exotic flower delivery shop in Muscat. My impression when I met him was that Husain Baomar is innovative in a manner that is highly practical, making him a philanthropic leader. His ability to identify opportunities and gather the resources to turn a possibility into a reality is what makes him a successful entrepreneur, and he is driven by his dream of saving Oman’s environment and conserve its marine life, so future generation can live a healthier life.

The statement “two good heads are always better than one” is completely true for us.

The flower business was just the beginning for us, and our partnership snowballed as we ventured into new projects and ideas, blossoming with our collection of Lucky Bamboo Plants (currently exported to eleven countries). Spreading our wings, we got into construction of bamboo houses and have completed several projects together in the years since.

Our diversity of ideas, perspectives and opinions benefited us not just at the initial conceptualising stage of SainBags, but it also helped our business to grow and tackle new challenges and grasp at new opportunities. When we first discussed our ideas, it was like refining gold. We brainstormed, analysed, debated, and argued about different aspects of the business idea and our journey together as business partners has been an immeasurably dynamic and enticing one.

Our fear that "the economy being rediscovered means the environment will be abandoned” got us thinking. Passionate about living greener, simpler and more rewarding lives, looking to make a difference, determined to fill the gap for organic, fully compostable bags promoting themselves in a greener, more eco-friendly way, so SainBags was born.

Sainbags are made from cassava starch and other sustainable materials. Cassava starch is biodegradable and compostable, leaving no toxic residues. It therefore causes no damage to our oceans, waterways, or landscapes and is harmless to animals and plants. SainBags are more than just shopping bags, they’re a step towards a healthier lifestyle, planet, and thinking. Husain and I have always been value-based, socially-focussed leaders, driven by a higher purpose beyond the balance sheet. In our business practice, we always ensure the decisions we make cause no harm to the society or the environment to ensure we are behaving socially and ethically responsibly.

SainBags are characterised by being completely biodegradable and compostable at home (rather than requiring industrial composting facilities). Our products do not contain a trace of plastic, therefore they do not contribute to the micro-plastics problem polluting our oceans. Our bags take around 90 days to compost in soil or a body of water, as opposed to hundreds of years for regular PE bags. They are as strong as any other plastic bags and help to serve the same purpose as regular single-use plastic, but without the life-long environmental consequences. We hope that some day soon we will see the end of plastic and paper bags as more eco-conscious consumers carry around biodegradable and compostable bags.

As well as bags for supermarkets and the hospitality business (namely restaurants and hotels), our company is involved in the manufacture of a wide range of bio-based cassava products. We make environmentally-friendly aprons and sheets for hospitals and pharmacies. Our Bags are also used as packaging for lubricants and electronic devices, as they have anti-static and anti-rust properties. SainBags are also manufacturing bamboo straws, cutlery and toothbrushes, further developing our all-round sustainable outlook and values.

What began in Oman now is a global presence across markets of UAE, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Saudi Arabia, UK, Germany, India, Singapore, Jordan, Indonesia, Thailand and Malaysia. Additionally, clear strategies are in place to expand to more countries by the end of 2021.

SainBags is on a mission to offer thoughtful, ethical and sustainably sourced products that allow people to re-imagine the world we live in.

So how did we succeed when so many start-ups fail? Well, Husain and I consider our employees our most valuable asset and believe in helping realise their dreams. Their passion for work is paramount, and we build trust that fosters organisational success and sustainability through our commitment to social and financial accountability. Integrity and respect guide our business practices and relationships with each other, our employees, members and our community – and we really couldn’t have launched SainBags without the input of them all.

The trek to business success has been full of peaks and troughs; wins and losses; challenge and prosperity. If you’re not strong enough to withstand it all, you become discouraged and disheartened, and ultimately give up. We provided emotional support and helped each other to keep the hope alive. Our journey has just begun, and SainBags, in one sentence, believes “alone we can do nothing; together we can do so much”.

Last but not the least we extend our gratitude to all our partners, individuals who have taken the bold step and initiative to replace their Single use plastic Bags with SainBags .We are happy to be associated with such like-minded people and companies, who are driven by passion and perfection. The challenge of saving the Earth is only in our hands!


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