Being the startup capital of the country means that many of us are planning our dream offices right now. But setting up your business often means that you are probably on a tight budget and don’t have too much wiggle room. However, that shouldn’t mean that you should give up on your office dreams. With a little effort, you can snap up great deals that bring you the basic necessities and also a few items that can add personality to your office space. LBB shows you the way to wholesale markets and budget shopping areas where you’ll find everything you need to set up shop.

Stationery

Photo: Rudra Rakshit Sharan

Photo: Rudra Rakshit Sharan

Avenue Road is your BFF for basic stationery. Just a walk down the long road can get you everything you’ll need. Start off at the State Bank of Mysore end and you’ll find plenty of stores that encourage bulk-buying. Expect sets of notebooks, ledgers, post-its, and appointment diaries. If your office goes through plenty of paper, then it would be a good idea to pick up the bundles of recycled sheets {the back of these will usually be printed with random numbers} for less than INR 50. Pens, pencils, rulers, staplers, and files can also be found. The prices are slashed down but you can still ask for an additional discount.

Not so keen on trudging down to Avenue Road? Then try Orion Paper Mart that’s just off Commercial Street. You won’t be able to bag the bargains that Avenue Road offers but you can still expect a substantial discount on bulk buys.

Furniture

centralstreet

Photo Source: Just Dial

Head over to Central Street, near Shivajinagar, for plain old wooden desk and swivel chairs. Shop after shop, in this area, stocks up on plywood desks and also the old-school steel variety. If you’re not a big fan of those foamy swivel chairs that we see in offices, you can get sturdy, plastic work chairs that will do the trick. Now, because Central Street sees a steady stream of customers, prices are not very friendly. So make sure you go along with someone who has killer bargaining skills. For many startups investing in furniture may seem too much at the start. In this scenario, you can hire out furniture from shops here.

If you have enough monies to opt for better-looking stuff, then we recommend the Outer Ring Road. All around the Banaswadi and Horamavu stretch there are scores of furniture shops that have popped up over the years. Many of these are factory outlets and you can search these for fashionable furniture on a budget.

Plants

Photo: Ramesh NG

Photo: Ramesh NG

Nurseries are not hard to find these days. If you look closely you’ll probably find one sitting by the side of the road in your locality. However, if your plant knowledge is at best basic, then head to Lalbagh. The Horticulture Department runs an expansive nursery in the garden’s premises {get in through the gate on Double Road and you’ll easily spot it}. Here you can find everything from houseplants to ornamental and exotic offerings. You can also pick up planters and trays here. While the prices are not dirt cheap, you won’t shell out as much as you would elsewhere in the city.

Electronics

SP Road for the win! This busy street, near Bangalore’s Town Hall, is just perfect for office electronics. If you’re looking for heavy-duty stuff like desktops and laptops, then find a good dealer here and source everything you need from him. He’ll be able to give you a discount on the wholesale prices for sure. However, if you need something such as a lone printer or scanner, then shop around and take the best deal you get. Accessories such as pen drives, hard drives and headphones are also easily available.

Lights

BulbChandelier

Look no further than BVK Iyengar Road for all your lighting needs. You can add real funk to your office space with colourful bulb chandeliers and lights with unique metal frames from here. Pick up a bunch of overhead lamps and you can add a dose of personality to your meeting rooms. Outdoor, garden lights can also be found. Everything here is reasonably priced and they usually give you another 10 per cent off at the billing counter.

Decor

Photo: Rudra Rakshit Sharan

Photo: Rudra Rakshit Sharan

Adding fancy decor to your startup office but may seem like a waste of precious rupees. However, nobody really likes working a drab spot, do they? It won’t take much to add a spot of colour to your walls. Just take a few print-outs off the internet and get them framed at shops on Central Street, Shivajinagar. Places such as Shree Balaji Frame Works offer plenty of classic black or white frames. They even stock up on works from local artists. So you can settle on a serene Buddha or a gorgeous sunset for your office.

Feature Photo and Lights: Devika Raman