Steamed and packed, a momo is a big source of love not only for foodies but is also equally appealing to anyone and everyone, literally. One can savour the stuffed flavours and unravel the richness of this marvellous dish, cooking which is an art in itself. Juicy Momos simplifies it all for the customers. They present a variety of momos to choose from, making it tough not to fall in love with this delicacy. Check out how the team of SoS found out more about this start-up.
SoS: Share with us your business idea and why you chose this specific business to be an entrepreneur?
Chetan: As soon as I finished my BBM from Christ University in 2012, I applied to an MNC but got rejected in the very last round when they realised how poor my college grades were. I decided it was time to begin something on my own. I had always loved business, though my family was not from this background. I chose the safest option, selling food, remembering Lee Iacocca’s famous observation, “…no matter how bad things get, people still have to eat.”
I began with a baked goods franchise (“Just Bake”) within my college campus. Running this franchise taught me more than I could have ever imagined possible. I learnt how to build a brand, to manage production, logistics, procurement, accounting, marketing and above all how to be accountable and responsible.
It was time to start my own brand, my own identity. I began with a food brand called ‘Drool’ where I sold an eclectic range of food items from Pav Bhaji to Pasta. Momos were also a part of this menu because I had just been to Manali and had tasted my first momo there. I had fallen in love with the dish and added it simply as a minor part of my menu. After a few months, momos had become my largest source of revenue. After much thought and quite a few hiccups later I decided to focus on momos only and came up with 37 new varieties of Momos and stopped other products.
This was the turning point in my business life.
SoS: Amazing! What has been the key milestones of your food business?
Chetan: We have opened 11 outlets in Bangalore in 2 years. We are one of the biggest brands for Momos in Bangalore. We have 40 full-time employees and a few part-timers.
SoS: Also, please share some hiccups that you have witnessed as an entrepreneur?
Chetan: It is very difficult to find the right people at the right time, especially those with integrity. Apart from good staff, management of funds was another issue. It did not help that while I loved my business classes in college, I could not stand even an hour of accountancy.
SoS: What are the plans for your business in the coming future?
Chetan: Firstly, I want to go global and contribute to India’s export revenue. Along with this I also want to create numerous employment opportunities worldwide and empower rural Indian women by creating jobs to make Momos on a large scale with quality controls.
SoS: State 3 things about your business which differentiate you from the rest?
Chetan: We have a secret recipe (wink), We give utmost attention to hygiene and quality of ingredients and We involve all the management level staff in the decision-making process.
SoS: What have been the key ingredients that made your entrepreneurial dream a success?
Chetan: Logical thinking and common sense were used in taking decisions. I also gained experience as the youngest franchise owner of Just Bake which really helped me create my own brand. Luckily, when in dire need I found the right people to work with me and help me.
SoS: If you could restart your journey as an entrepreneur, would you do it differently?
Chetan: No. I would not want to restart my journey because the experience I have gained so far has led me to be where I am today. I would not give up what I have learnt for anything in the world.
SoS: What is your dream for your venture?
Chetan: To be the biggest brand for Momos/dimsums in the world and to create employment opportunities for women in rural areas.
SoS: Who has been your greatest inspiration and the source of your strength?
Chetan: Mr. U.A Vasanth Rao, who is the financial head for BMRCL, Mr. S.V Patel who is in the top level management of Grasim cements, Mr. Mohan Reddy who is my financial consultant and my mentor have inspired me by what they know, what they do with this knowledge and who they are as human beings.
I have also been inspired by a few books without which I may not be where I am today: Connect the dots, Stay hungry Stay foolish & I have a dream, all of them written by Rashmi Bansal, who is an alumni of IIM-A.
SoS: A funny or a memorable anecdote or a situation you would like to share?
Chetan: I loved to eat momos myself and ended up creating the best momos. I think it is incredibly ironic that momos, something I had never considered important or valuable to my business model turned out the hero in my story. It was my entrée to success, to individuality and has defined a lot of my life today. Looking back I think it was my love for momos that clinched it. Love always triumphs.
— SoS TEAM