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research 2013-11-18

Food Retail Business in India

‘People is not going to the store, store is coming to the people that’s how technology has made things easier.’

By Deputy Features Editor
Food Retail Business in India

Restaurant India organised Retail CXO Dialogue in collaboration with Hewlett-Packard (HP) at The Lalit, New Delhi on 15th November bringing together leaders from food and retail industry.

The event brought industry people on a single platform highlighting the growth opportunities in food and retail business in the country. The panellist included Pawan Gadia, CEO, Ferns N Petals, Suchindran  Chakravarthi, Tech Lead - CTO, Cocoberry (a part of Horizon Group) , Sanjeev Pathak, Emerging Business and Attach, Printing and Personal System Group, HP. 

The two hour interactive session was moderated by Ritu Marya, Editor-in-Chief, Franchise India highlighting the fact that the consumer have become very trendy and aspirational these days and this has lead the brands to respond to them appropriately.

Talking about the growth opportunity, Marya pointed about the growth opportunities in the ‘masstige’ segment, which is neither premium nor mass, but at the same time suitably meets the needs of evolving consumers. In addition, Marya also raised her concerns relating to “lack of aggression” amongst senior managers and owners in the restaurant sector vis-a-vis e-commerce and other emerging sectors, for raising funds from private equity and allied channels.

Talking about the growth stories of the brand, panellists also talked about their growth story, how they have reached to the heart of people and their future expansion plans.

Suchindran Chakravarthi, Tech Lead - CTO, Cocoberry elaborated his journey, “Cocoberry opened its first store in 2009 at Defense Colony, South Delhi and the strong response from consumers for the frozen yoghurt led to ten additional outlets within a year.”

“The company has continued its growth strategy and currently has 40 outlets across the country leading to 100 percent growth per year. In addition, the emphasis has been on applications which support both the front-and back-end operations of this group,” he added.

Talking about going to the e-commerce level, Chakarvarthi said, “We can’t take an e-commerce route because we are not ready- to- eat food. I want a system where the order is in hand, the technology should be made touch enabled so that the customer can order for themselves.”

Vikas Arora, Executive Director, Geoffrey’s talked about the franchise model of the business. He said, “Franchises also have brand ambassador and when you take your business to this route you should make sure that the franchisee is also making money.”

He also added, “To open an outlet is easy but to run it successfully is very tough and there are no shortcuts for a food business in India.”

Kabir Advani, MD, Bercos mentioned, “We need to tweak the franchise model. It should be made more controllable and the systems should be made clear.”

Talking about technology, PK Gupta, Chairman & MD, Cafe Buddy’s clarified, “There is no software on data as of now when we think from QSR points of view.”

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