Hitesh Keswani, owns four brands and is successfully running 8 restaurants under the umbrella. Talking to Restaurant India, he shares his strategy for success in the food driven Indian society.
You are running chains of restaurant under different brand names. Where does success lie in restaurant business?
Running and operating the restaurant smoothly is the main key to a restaurant success. Getting the right location, formats and the target customer is another important area in a successful restaurant operation.
What menu tweaks made you stand out in food business?
We keep on revamping our menus in every four months that help our customer experiment something new after few months time. We are introducing the modern Asian cuisine menu at Nom-Nom giving Asian touch and tweak to the global menu.
What was the initial investment that you made in setting up your restaurant? What marketing strategy you have adopted for your brand?
The initial investment that we did for our restaurant was 1.5 crore.
I do not believe on marketing or advertising, rather, I believe on word-of-mouth publicity and I think your product is the best marketing tool for your brand.
What is your expansion plan?
We presently own and operate 8 restaurants and we are planning to add 4 more restaurants by June 2015 in Mumbai. At the same time, we are looking at expanding our brand presence outside Mumbai with a franchisee opportunity.
What is your plan regarding your brand presence in the global market?
We are planning to open an outlet of Silver Beach Cafe in Dubai by next April.
What is your view on the FSSAI regulations in India?
I think, FSSAI has made it difficult to abide by all the laws and rules because it is now difficult for us to source raw materials from global landscapes. At the same time getting all the licenses in place is another tough task because you don’t have enough time running here and there, from each door to other door because getting those licenses done needs enough time and money to be paid.
Indians have a wide variety of beverages and wines to choose from. But we do not find any experiment happening in the section. Reason?
Talking about alcohol people are very stuck to what they want to drink. So, a restaurant can’t experiment much with the alcohol. But in terms of mock tails, ice tea and other beverages we keep on doing lots of innovation.
What is the revenue ratio at your restaurants and bar?
We get 70 to 75 percent of revenue from food and the rest from alcoholic beverages. But at the Copa bar, alcohol brings in 75 percent of the revenue, which makes the outlet the most profitable among all the four brands.