If there’s one woman in Singapore that is impressively leading a movement for sustainable businesses and social change, that would be the CEO of Fairmarch, Rika Purnamasari.
Fairmarch’s vision in supporting social enterprises is tantamount to improving people’s lives and their careers. This includes stellar customer service, a reliable fulfilment centre, and their ability to ship worldwide.
Through their unwavering commitment at Fairmarch, they ensure clients and customers source for what they need and are socially responsible at the same time. To know more about our featured woman of the week, we were fortunate to have a sit-down with Rika while she shared about her role in this industry.
Q. Let’s talk about your current business/profession, what do you do?
I’m with Fairmarch, a marketplace for socially responsible products. I wear different hats in the organisation but the main aim is to ensure that our partners are happy and well equipped to sell more products to customers. We also believe that social enterprises can bring about a sustainable change by providing a platform where they could sell more and have visibility in the market.
Before this, I represented Quest Ventures; a leading venture fund for technology companies at key ecosystems across Asia Pacific such as Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore. I was also part of the successful launch of the National Youth Entrepreneurship Awards – Singapore’s highest accolade for young entrepreneurs.
Q. Tell me something that’s true, that almost nobody agrees with you on.
As an entrepreneur at an early stage, as much as you would like to get many things done while generating good results, I think it takes courage to accept that we’re not superhuman. There will be failures in execution and that’s okay as long as lessons are learnt and mistakes are not repeated. The real mistake, in my opinion, is when you stop trying.
Q. How old were you when you had your first paying job?
I was 22 years old when I first broke into the career world, which is a pretty standard working age.
Q. Given what you know today if we took a time machine back to the beginning, what would you have done differently?
If I could go back in time, I would try to be more self-assured and take smarter risks.
Q. What is ’empowerment’ to you?
For me, empowerment is having the confidence to do things that you’re passionate about.
Q. There are ups and downs in life, can you tell us an interesting story?
Those ups and downs are quite temperamental especially when you are building a new company. One moment your world may seem to tear apart because a deal did not pass through, while the next week you may jump for joy because you secured a much larger deal. When things don’t work the way you want it to, ask yourself what you can learn from it, and move on. Remember that in this world, you are required to pull yourself back up.
Rika is undoubtedly a woman to look up to. Working towards a better world and providing smart solutions for businesses, she clearly belongs in the long list of brave and unstoppable women in the industry.