The restaurant business has to sustain many vagaries and ever-evolving trends and there is no one perfect formula to keep your head above the water. But yes, certain elements, if taken seriously, can keep you in the competitive loop. A thing often heard is that the restaurant business is driven by passion and determination more than anything else. It’s true. An industry which has the highest attrition rate and is totally dependent on the whims and fancies of its customers certainly needs people with madness in their blood to do it the right way.
Quality food, right service, value-for-money pricing and an urge to keep pace with the trends are some of the factors that can make you successful. Interestingly, in terms of eating out, India is still 1/10th the consumption prevailing in the US and the UK. Moreover, the Indian restaurant industry often goes through rough patches and it’s only the right business model that can help make it sustainable.
“In any country, including the US, the UK and Russia, to name a few, a major percentage of the employment comes from the restaurant business,” says M Mahadevan, Chairman, Oriental Cuisines, a company that has in its fold 400 restaurants in over 16 countries employing more than 4000 people, including the likes of Saravana Bhawan, Kailash Parbat and Anjappar that serve traditional and comfort food in countries like Stockholm, Singapore and New York, among others.
Its More than Just Food
Ironically, the food business is not just about eating. In today’s times when millennial are dictating and driving new trends, what also matters is the ‘connect’ a customer feels with a restaurant. Ambience matters as much as the food and successful restaurant owners know that the ‘package’ must appeal to a wide variety of customers. “You need to have adaptive models with quality as the main essence in a restaurant business,” points Manu Chandra, Chef Partner, Olive Bar & Kitchen.
Customers’ today is leading the race of the good and the bad business where he has become very choosy about what suits his palate and where should he go for a memorable experience. And, restaurant industry as a sector which has the highest failure rate of about 70 per cent of its restaurant closing in the first year of operations is going through a tough time to go at par with the customer choices. People who have travelled across the world in search of good food and vibe is looking out for such experiences in India too and thanks to places like Social, Farzi Café, Olive Bar & Kitchen, Fatty Bao to name a few that are changing the dining scene in the country. Not only this seeing such an opportunity global Indian chefs like Atul Kochhar, Vineet Bhatia and Hari Nayak is also eyeing India as the potential market sensing that the country now holds a clientele base who is ready to go beyond boundaries trying and hitting on new things.