Altaf Saiyed – Co Founder- Built2Cook has always loved good food. But, he goes by the choice that isn’t too elaborate to prepare and yet does not compromise on taste. Working with an IT/ITES company he had to travel a lot and as most of these companies is located in outskirts of a city it’s difficult to get authentic food after work. And food that is home delivered loses 30% of taste and quality. Saiyed finally called up a friend, who is a chef, and told him to send him a recipe to try over weekend. The first one he tried to create was the most popular street food - Pad Thai from a recipe the chef has sent in from Mumbai. And he spent several hours over Rs 3000 in shopping. At the end of it all, the whole experience was exhausting and the dish didn't even taste good.
Undaunted, he wanted to try it again and as he was travelling to Hyderabad he took all the material to make the Pad Thai measuring equipment, prepared the food by the guidance of his chef friend on phone. And voila! It turned out really good. And then he sent the same measured ingredients and instructions to few friends along and results were similar. But who has the luxury of chef online and complex measuring equipment. That’s when Built2Cook was born.
Tell us about your 90 minutes food delivery model?
Our target is to deliver within 60 minutes across the city with kitchens in several locations. Our first kitchen is set up in Andheri, Mumbai and we are delivering within a 10 km radius. Our next kitchens will cater to Bandra, Malad, Navi Mumbai and Thane.
Currently, we have divided delivery into three zones
ïƒ˜ Group 1(10kms radius)- 60 minutes free delivery, no minimum amount ïƒ˜ Group 2(10-15 kms)- 2 hours and minimum delivery of Rs 500 ïƒ˜ Group 3 (15kms +) - same day if ordered before 12pm or next day delivery and minimum order Rs 500.
What was the initial investment done? Did you take any help from family and friends or it was funded by someone else?
We have secured a fund of 1.5cr. This is partly bootstrapped with money I had saved up from my last businesses and a little help from my friends.
As you claim that the meals are prepared by the 5 star chefs. Name some chefs?
Our chefs have requested confidentiality since they aren’t yet full-time employees of Built2Cook.
What is the revenue sharing model between the chefs and you?
The chefs understand the potential of the business and are keen to test the model before they join us full time. Few chefs would own equity in the company so our interests are aligned.
As the meal is packed in a box, how is the packaging done to make the food fresh and authentic?
Every ingredient is measured just before dispatch, so that authenticity of taste, texture and nutritional content is preserved. We have a daily supply chain to ensure the freshest ingredients. While, curating the recipes, we also look into seasonality to add to the freshness. All our packaging is done in food grade material and transported in a cool box.
We see that food is the new love of investors. Are you in talks with any to raise funds? If yes, when can we see the funding taking place?
We are in a very early stage of development. We are in talks with investors and haven’t finalized on anything.
You started you journey from Hyderabad and now entered Mumbai. Why Mumbai as next location you may have chosen Gurgaon or Bengaluru which has some amazing food start-ups doing good business?
Mumbai is amazing when it comes to acceptance, spending ability of population and desire to try new things. Starting in Mumbai is awesome, it is trial by fire. Also for a start-up Mumbai now has a better infrastructure to deliver in comparison.
What is your next expansion plan?
Our model is to establish Mumbai before we expand to Pune, Bengaluru and Gurgaon.
Tell us something about yourself. Why did you planned to enter into the food business?
I’m part foodie and part traveler. Built2Cook is an amazing way to mix passion and business. I love trying out new food and Built2Cook allows me to try as many different cuisines as possible. My goal is simple - make authentic food affordable. No one wants to pay Rs 1000 for a good Thai curry or Rs 700 for a good Bhuna Boti. And neither is anyone willing to go through shopping, chopping, measuring etc. Built2Cook addresses all of this and brings convenient, great quality, healthy and fresh food at affordable prices.