When and what made you enter into the food business?
After working with printing industry for almost 26 years it was in 2005 that I decided that doing the same job is very boring. I reflected in myself and starting realising that a lot of person start with a particular activity in their life and die doing this. So, why do we need to do a job for whole life and doing a job for 25 long years become boring. And, that’s when I stopped working on my own company giving it to my brother. For three months I was on holiday which I have never taken and enjoyed life. It was by accident that my wife and I came up with this Subway franchise and then we started on that. And, gradually we became one of the largest Subway franchisee in Asia in terms of number of franchisees.
When did you planned to open a restaurant of your own?
It was in 2009 that I decided if I can do Subway stores well why can’t I start my own restaurant. I created Tuscana and expanded to four restaurants. In between I did a Greek restaurant called Kryptos which was very successful in terms of food but financially not stable so I sold it. The Greek food was very famous...Friday to Sunday it was very packed but from Monday to Thursday there was no crowd so it was not profitable financially so I had to close it. Then I opened a bar and when it was booming I sold that too because I am not a night person and bar is a night business. Now, I am doing Tuscana Pizzeria and Subway restaurants.
You have operated multi brands and cuisines. How difficult or easy it was for you to do that?
I am not in love with any industry; I am in love with human beings. It was too early to open that restaurant and cuisine. I don’t think it was difficult at all. God has chosen people to do good things. Once you can understand human beings you can manage any industry.
How many restaurants you are running as of now?
I am running six Subway restaurants in Chennai and four Tuscana. I don’t want to expand at the moment. I also run a construction project in Delhi. I don’t want to keep doing the same thing again and again. I want to do new things.
What are some of the different varieties served at Tuscana Pizzeria?
We serves pizza in four bases at Tuscana- regular classic which is nothing but junk food made of maida, multigrain pizza, wheat base and gluten free base. All pizzas are available in same price there is no variation in the pricing.
How do you see restaurant industry?
In the next one two years there will be lots of mortality. Our country is going through the biggest change. There is no easy of doing business. I don’t think at the moment any industry is growing. There is lots of merger and consolidation happening. People are focusing on consolidating brands. So many, McDoanld’s, Subway, KFC is closing here and there.
What advice you would like to give to aspiring restaurateur?
Be in the industry only if you want to do 24*7 jobs. It’s a path breaking job which involves passion and zeal. You need to be extrovert and always ready to serve. You need to be friendly to everyone.