With Indians getting ready to add joy in their lives, entrepreneurs have full chance to cash in on the emerging concept of lounge and bar franchising. This unique concept has recently started attracting great attention from young entrepreneurs. Read on t
India is evolving in its new avatar with night life picking up fast as result of emergence of lounge and bar concept brands. During a short span of time, India has emerged out of its crust and has woken up to a real time bash. Today we can see a large number of lounge and bars springing up across the cities in India. The awareness and increased need for having quality food dine-in restaurants, entertainment and clubbing all under one roof, has further given a boast to this emerging industry. Cashing on this rising need, brands in the industry are expanding their business across cities, and countries. These players are encouragingly opting for franchise route for expansion, thus giving aspiring entrepreneurs to take up a franchise of lounge and bar brand.
Vyoum Ghai, Director Buzz shares: “Before the year 2001, Delhi had no place where all the three essentials: great food, great entertainment and great clubbing could be experienced under one roof without having to go from place to place. In those isolated times Buzz was born. The first such experience which combined the three essentials to make one whole is Buzz. It was this uniqueness which made Buzz, a cult and completely changed the way Delhi partied.”
Today, the young Indians do not want to relax at home after an exhausting work-filled week, but prefer instead to spend time at the lounge and bars. This change is apparent in the people of the country, their lifestyle and their ways of entertainment and leisure activities. Lounges and bars have become popular hangout places amongst young college-goers and the working youth.
The lounge and bars provide people a place to relax and chill out, and spend some time with family, friends and colleagues. Ghai said: “It is a promising sector for entrepreneurs due to the sociological and economic changes which have rapidly occurred all across the country due to which people are willing to spend a lot more on entertainment and life style than ever before. As the saying goes 'One life to live, so make the best of it', India has awakened to this!”
Few of inspiring factors for the growth of lounge and bars are:
Love for nightlife and party: Youth of today prefer partying in lounge and bars every now and then. With the changing lifestyle, partying till late nights is an accepted way of life for youth.
Youth’s spot: Youth has always been an early adopter of new trends in the society and the trend of lounge and bar is one of these. Hanging out with friends and family at a comfortable place with nice ambience and quality food and beverages is desired by everyone. All these services are offered under one roof by these lounges.
Flowing money: People these days believe in not just living life but celebrating life to the fullest and never mind even spending few extra bucks in their celebrations.
Franchising is the best possible way to expand business and lounge and bar franchise concept is not an exception. Some of the brands having opted for franchise route for expansion are:
Fusion Lounge: A Bengaluru based club presently operates 10 lounges. It has three different formats Super premium, Premium and Budget ranging from Rs 50 lakh to Rs1.5 crore.
Buzz: Buzz has already demonstrated its success potential in the last 10 years of its existence at both its locations. At present, Buzz has two successfully running outlets of its own in Delhi NCR region. None of the outlets are franchised presently. But Ghai shares: “We are aggressively planning our franchise expansion. In addition to Tier I cities, we are keenly looking at Tier II cities in India as they may have a more conducive commercial environment plus the social demographics and permissibility in these cities have significantly evolved and changed in the last 10 years.”
Productive franchise break
Being a franchisee of a lounge and bar can prove to be a profitable break for aspiring entrepreneurs. Hence, it’s apt to take a franchise of an established and prominent brand. Ghai told: “The biggest advantage of running a franchised lounge according to me is that the franchisee gets a direct access to an already existing success story which otherwise could be difficult to create, if not impossible. Access to the franchisors strengths and support in overcoming typical industry challenges like human resource attrition, menu recipe consistency, costs and controls management, inflation etc is also a great advantage to the franchisee. Last but not the least being a part of a common marketing network managed by the franchisor, which is essential in this format, is a valuable asset for any franchisee.”
Lounge and bar can be a painstaking task as it takes lot of time and capital to build a brand name. Ananth Narayan, Chief Operating Officer, Fusion Lounge shares: “I have lost loads of money in testing gadgets and getting it to perfection and also have lost loads of money in setting up pubs and closing them. The ultimate result of these two has made me a master of perfection in my trade which I would like to leverage through franchising format and would not like to see investors not to be cheated the way I was over a number of years.”
Lounge and bar is not everyone’s cup of tea as it is an expensive business model and not anyone can take a franchise of this business.
Ghai tells: “The franchisee is required to have an ability to invest approximately Rs 1.5 crore depending upon the city, location and commercials. The area required is 3,000 sq. ft approximately. The franchisee need not be F&B skilled but an individual with a positive attitude and good social standing and a compatible strategic bend is also welcomed.”
It is not only the money which runs a business there are some other needs also to be fulfilled by a franchisee. Narayan tells: “Well educated and computer knowledge is a must. He should be able to spare few man hours a day at the concept venue, should have his own funds to invest and should not be the one who will invest and forget, should have passion and zeal to run the concept.”
Challenges for franchisee
Every business has to face challenges and one has to overcome them. Ghai informs: “Like any other business there are challenges in this business also. Staff attrition, security, quality consistency are to name a few, but with the constant back up support of the franchisor these can be overcome easily.”
It will be motivating for aspiring entrepreneurs to conclude with Narayan’s statement on growth of lounge industry: “The success rate of someone in pub industry is one on a scale of ten. But with the concept of pub/lounge/entertainment zone coming in, the success rate should be nine on a scale of 10 and this would be an understatement too.”