In a conversation with Restaurant India, Abhay Hanjura, Founder & CEO at Licious reveals how the idea of creating a â€˜meat marketplaceâ€™ came about and how they are poised for its growth in Bengaluru and pan-India.
How did the idea to launch online meat delivery platform come about?
We never wanted to build a meat 'delivery' platform. Both Vivek, my Partner and I, are passionate food lovers and we used to bond a lot over good food, especially meat. This is where we saw a huge gap and opportunity in building a world-class consumer brand that focuses on hygiene and quality. This, very unorganised space definitely needed a solution from the traditional meat buying options, which we believe were driven more out of lack of choice than anything else.
How will Licious become an easy and convenient solution for customers?
Licious will add tremendous value to the life of a meat lover, there are various aspects that a consumer is bound to love which includes choice of custom cuts, convenience of having all meats in one basket including seafood & cold cuts and the guarantee of germ, insect and contamination free 'fresh' and not frozen meat, powered by the promise of instant delivery with various payment options and easy returns made accessible by new gen-tech solutions, all this makes great sense to a consumer.
How many orders are you targeting to get in the next two months?
We are targeting around 150 orders a day and we are also aiming at setting up five hubs across Bengaluru in the next two months.
Who are your regular customers and who do you see as your target group?
We are blessed to have an astounding repeat percentage in excess of 65 per cent, and in times to come, with growing scale we hope to maximise this. Our typical consumer is a meat lover who craves for quality and freshness in his/her pound of flesh.
We want Licious to be the most loved food brand in the days to come; hence, it's imperative that we stay relevant to a large cross spectrum of consumers.
How do you maintain the freshness of the meat products?
This is an execution driven business and we understood that upfront. We have build a robust and seamless cold chain network at every step of the chain from sourcing to delivery that keeps Licious meat tasting absolutely and vividly delicious and tender. We strive hard every day to build this enterprise on a zero inventory model, which means we don't store our Licious meats in cold storage for undue durations. We have spent a lot of time in understanding the nuances of this and we've build a world-class team that understands tech consumer biz space very well. There is an exclusive in-house sourcing team that has stringent partner on boarding criteria and we develop partners who are willing to align to the Licious way. There's a quality team that ensures that the quality parameters are met at every step of the process.
Do you see any market threats? What is the marketing strategy to survive in the un-organised market?
It looks like a very large market and we are the first to disrupt this space through a very unique consumer and quality oriented process. So long as we stay true to our quality and compliance promises, we feel there is no stopping a geometric progression in terms of sales and scale. The marketing strategy is clearly consumer focus and driven by educating the consumer on qualitative attributes of meat buying experience.
What is your total revenue? What is your target revenue for this fiscal?
It's too early to comment upon this right now. I can say that we have serviced in excess of 1,000 orders in the first month of operations without any marketing and largely through word of mouth of our customers who've continued to love us over these very exciting first few days.
What are your plans to scale up business?
We don't want to let go of the thought leader and the first mover advantage. Our plans to scale are very aggressive and we would like to cover entire Bengaluru with 10-15 hubs in the next six months and move to the next city. We'd like to be present in all metro and tier 1 cities of India in the next three years.
In terms of the team, we have built a very scalable team at the corporate office and we wouldn't be adding any new key positions. There would obviously be hiring done in the areas of Hub operations and production as we move forward.