Startup Saturday Delhi held on November 14th, was a Food and Beverage theme this month. This was the first time we held a Startup Saturday Delhi with absolutely no connection to technology. We hope those of you in the audience found it to be a refreshing change.Our first speaker was Preet Saini, founder of Mrs. Kaur’s. Mrs. Kaur’s makes premium American style cookies, brownies, and other confectionary items. Mrs. Kaur’s has also started a restaurant in Khan Market, New Delhi. Preet is a serial entrepreneur and has done many different types of businesses. He discussed his learnings from each and every business he started and how he was able to learn from each one to launch Mrs. Kaur’s and grow it rapidly in 3 years with no marketing budget at all. One example he cited was that even before they were ready to go, he had t-shirts, baseball hats, and delivery scooters covered in the Mrs. Kaur’s logo. As soon as they started putting up stalls at various local fairs, people immediately got the impression that Mrs. Kaur’s was a much larger company than it was. Our next speaker was Akhilesh Bali, founder of Mithai Mate. Mithai Mate allows people to buy Indian sweets online from various distributors across India. You can buy the sweets for yourself or send them as a gift to others. Mithai Mate is run out of the bedrooms of the 3 founders. They launched the service approximately 7 months ago and are averaging 5-6 orders per day right now. Mithai Mate has developed partnerships with various confectioners across India from Jammu and Kashmir to Delhi to Jabalpur and beyond. One of the biggest challenges they faced in the beginning was the inability to get preferred pricing from their partners and logistical issues with delivery in India. As the orders have come in, some of Mithai Mate’s partners have recognized their growth and began entertaining a different pricing model, which would allow Mithai Mate to be able to make a profit on each delivery. Our final speaker was Nitin from Chakhle India which has 15 locations serviced by push carts selling clean, tasty, authentic Indian food. Nitin faced different issues than some of the other entrepreneurs we’ve had come and speak at Startup Saturday. His challenges were goons and certain other people in and around Gurgaon trying to hit his vendors up for money. He also faced the problem of existing street vendors fighting with him for turf. Again, Chakhle India, began presenting an image the portrayed it as a much larger company that it was. As the corrupt and degenerate began believing that Chakhle was backed by a much larger and potentially powerful group, the extortion problem died down. Today, Chakhle has carved out a niche by servicing a large number of people (from all economic classes) around Gurgaon who enjoy street food but are afraid of getting sick because of a lack of hygiene.
Our thanks to Preet, Akhilesh and Nitin for sharing their entrepreneurial journeys at Startup Saturday.
The next Startup Saturday Delhi will be held on December 12th, 2009 from 2pm till 6pm at the American Center on KG Marg. We look forward to seeing you there.