With the dream to create a hospitality product with character, personality and attitude, Paloma Hospitality came into being. Paloma has recently adopted the franchise route for expansion of Tawaah restaurant. In an interview, Sandeep Pusdekar, Director, Paloma Hospitality, informs about the future plans of the brand.
Abha Garyali (AG): Share with us the origin of Paloma Hospitality.
Sandeep Pusdekar (SP): Paloma Hospitality is my brain child. It came into being by way of an ambition to create a hospitality product with character, personality and an attitude of its own.
AG: When was the brand ‘Paloma Hospitality’ created? What motivated you to adopt the franchise route for expansion of Paloma Hospitality?
SP: Paloma Hospitality was created a year back. We adopted the franchise route as it is the best way to expand with lower investments in real estate and scale up faster within city and even outside city limits.
AG: Do you face competition from other organised and unorganised hotel players in this category? What strategies have you employed for handling the competition?
SP: We face competition from different sectors. We try to beat this competition by our reasonable prices, and quality products and services. Moreover, we offer more value to our customers than our competitors.
AG: What is the USP of Paloma Hospitality?
SP: Our USP is that we believe in celebrating food rather than selling it. Our company is quite flexible and can mould according to the needs of our customers.
AG: Paloma Hospitality is planning to expand their restaurant brand ‘Tawaah’. What are your plans for it?
SP: We have plans to open at least six outlets in a mix of both franchised and company owned outlets. The company will be looking forward to start a non-vegetarian fine dine Tawaah restaurant.
AG: What can you foresee about the future success of ‘Tawaah’ in Maharashtra and the rest of India?
SP: Tawaah has a very acceptable menu and service concept. We call ourselves a street food service restaurant that serves food for all tastes and customers across different economic groups. Therefore, we will have no problem in opening up in B and C towns. Moreover, the menu offered is not so labour intensive and the labour required is available all over India.
AG: What are the qualities and the criteria for the selection of your prospective franchisees? How much investment is required by them?
SP: The selection criteria for our prospective franchisees are generally based on the aptitude towards the restaurant industry and available location for Tawaah outlet. They need not be from the hospitality sector. Work experience of minimum three months is required in this sector. A total initial investment up to Rs 50 lakh is needed by the franchisees.
AG: What are your future plans in terms of expansion through franchising?
SP: Presently, we are putting all our efforts in expanding and popularising the concept of Tawaah in Pune. After finishing this, we can be better equipped with centralised kitchen, food processing unit, and logistic infrastructure. This would help us in further expanding our brand in areas like Nashik, Kolhapur etc.
AG: How many franchisees do you have in India and in which cities?
SP: As of now we have only one restaurant in Pune. We are a new company with high aspirations and zeal to succeed.
AG: How will the company support and train the franchisees?
SP: We would support our franchisees by cross training, shop floor supervision, and training manuals during start ups. Also, we provide on going annual training to them. We also take care of the hygiene factor in all our franchised outlets.