This banker turned his love for food into a bespoke mithai brand

Short Description
Talking to Restaurant India, Sid Mathur of Khoya Mithai talks about his love for food and leaving his banking job to return to India only to join hand with India's finest restaurant brand.
  • Nusra Deputy Features Editor
Sid Mathur

Sid Mathur spent half of his working life with private banks. From a very young age he was very involved in food whether it was doing a recipe, a review, reading a book, everything to do with food. When he came back from London, he joined Impresario and became a partner with Riyaaz Amlani of Social fame and also became the head of food at the company. “ It really helped me to enjoy my food and work on the food, menu, recipe and concept creation and also at the same time learning in and out of a restaurant,” said Mathur who also own a food consultancy firm wherein he has different brands including restaurants at Select CityWalk, Taj Vivanta, IKEA, Ambuja Hotel Group etc. Excerpts from the interview:

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How it all began?

Khoya Mithai was launched in 2016 as we could clearly see the gap in the market, a better mithai company that stands true to its recipes, ingredients, roots and tradition. We are quite happy with the growth. I also believed that the gifting market in India had been long dominated by chocolates and international confectionery, while the traditional box of mithai often didn’t make the cut. Hence, I put a new spin on mithai, sticking to the traditional roots but improving the quality of the product, using pure ingredients and packaging it beautifully.

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On taking the online route

We have been offline from last four years because the whole concept of creating luxury mithai, a bespoke concept was something that people wanted to talk about. Now we have established ourselves and we have a loyal customer base and we were planning to launch an online concept by March this year but due to Covid etc we launched the same in January.

Betting big on numbers

We are expecting to double our sales with online presence. We don’t make anything in large batches. We make mithai every single morning in fresh batches and we spend a lot of time talking to food historians, recipe developers. We are reading excessively on traditions, recipes, history and traditions, anything that we could do to gather information. We spent around nine months researching about mithai before we launched the brand and started working on recipes.

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How important is ingredient for you?

Ingredients matters, we created product with better ghee, better ingredients. We don’t use any additives, colours etc. Many of our customers buy mithai only from us. And, it’s now showing result both in terms of sales and availability.

Tell us something about numbers.

Mithai is an occasion based product. On a particular day we could get 20 orders of Rs 1500 each or we could get one massive order of 100 boxes. So, anything which is occasion based is huge. Diwali is always huge. I would say that 30 per cent of our entire annual sale happens during this week. We have everything in place; we are ready to hit the numbers etc. Holi is big, even rakhi day is a huge sale day. We also do lots of corporate events especially the international event like IKEA when the entire international team came here in India; every person was given the box of Khoya Mithai to relate to the Indian tradition, flavor.

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Who are your target customers?

I think initially when we started we targeted slightly middle class, upper middle class or people who understood that something is made with a better ingredient and sometimes you have to pay for the better ingredient. We are very competitive in pricing. We have a very high return ratio of almost 75% per cent of comeback customer. Everyone will appreciate our food now.

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High on expansion

We have realized that a lot of people are opening prematurely without knowing the target market. For us North Indian market is huge right now and we are looking at North presently. For us the key expansion will be the online presence as we are now confident that customer now understands the bespoke products. We have some very successful launches like Malpua, kachori etc. We are focusing on creating better processes and stabilizing our products in the coming years.

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