Partner, Inflection Point Ventures
As a Director in KPMG’s Deal Advisory practice, he managed mergers &
acquisitions, and restructuring engagements advising clients across Deal
Strategy, Strategic Transformation, Synergy & Cost Optimization, and other
He worked as the Group Finance Manager – India and Thailand at Magna Cosma International, where he led the M&A, Strategic Finance, and ERP Implementation activities, development of cost models, and FP&A function across the region.
He has also worked in EY (Financial Due Diligence) and PwC (Audit) teams in the early part of his career, specializing in Industrial Manufacturing, IT & ITES sectors.
Head - Key Accounts & Retail One - Nestle Professional
Experienced professional with 13+ years of experience in FMCGs like PepsiCo, Del Monte and Nestle in both B2B and B2C space with a demonstrated history of working in the food & beverages industry and Management consulting with Accenture. Skilled in P&L Management, Brand Management, Media Planning & Execution, Category development (core + innovation), Customer/Consumer Insights, Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG), Trade Marketing, Business Development and B2B Marketing (Food Services industry), Management Consulting.
Founder, Biggies Burger
Biraja Prasad Rout is the founder of Biggies Burger. Being an entrepreneur with a passion for global food, Biraja was appalled to see the sordid state of affairs especially in the Indian grilled burger segment. With global chains serving up fried burgers, he took it upon himself to provide customer with healthier, grilled burgers. With the country fed up with the taste of fried burgers, Biggies Burger came up with the grilled burgers.
Having over 6 years of experience in automation, Biraja aims to utilize his experience to standardize the systems and processes so as to build India’s very own QSR chain that revolves around standardization and SOPs. He observed that there was a demand for grilled burgers in the QSR market. Biraja started the first Biggies Burger unit at Electronic City, in the year 2011. The concept of grilled burgers was first introduced to the Indian consumers, and received widespread recognition. Additionally, there was a very great reception for grilled burgers, which has since gone on to become the core USP of Biggies Burger.
Having taken baby steps during the initial years to grasp a better understanding of the nuances of the QSRs, the brand has gradually made its mark among the populace. Perhaps the best testament to the success of the brand is the fact that post adopting the franchising route in 2016. BIGGIES BURGER is the largest homegrown grilled burger chain in India with the brand currently operating 120+ stores in 23 cities across 15 states.
Biraja has since undertaken constant innovations and product development, ensuring uniformity in quality and taste across all locations. Not only in burger making, Biraja is also striving to ease the burger store franchising process for those that want to explore the QSR business opportunities. Adding to it is that Biggies Burger has enabled its franchisees that come from varied backgrounds, comprising of government officials, army personnel, IT professionals etc. to become successful in QSR business.
Chef & Culinary Director, Embassy Leisure and Entertainment Projects LLP (Embassy Group)
A well–travelled chef with an in-depth understanding of culinary concepts and a strong passion for innovation. IHM Mumbai alumnus, advance culinary skills honed at the Culinary Institute of America, comes with over two decades of work experience.
Chef Vikas Seth has been felicitated with the most coveted ‘Chef of the Year – 2022’ award by the prestigious Times Food & Nighlife Awards.
Chef Seth is now the Culinary Director at Embassy Leisure, he has been the brains behind the multi-award winning restaurants Sanchez Restaurante & Cantina, Sriracha – Contemporary Pan-Asian Dining, HopsHaus – Botanical Brewery + Kitchen, Zest Besopke Catering, F&B outlets @ BLVD Club – Embassy Boulevard, Eden Café at Embassy Springs, amongst others.
Chef Vikas Seth A truly multi-faceted chef and member of the prestigious International association of gastronomy as ‘Chaîne des Rôtisseurs’. He has authored books for private circulation “The Modern Indian Odyssey” and a unique twin cover brand book ‘Sanchez & Sriracha’. Chef Seth has been listed in the ‘Top Food Entrepreneurs’ book by Restaurant India, he is the winner of Upper Crust Food and Wine Celebrity Chef Competition. Chef Seth was one of the Super Chefs on the Sony TV telecast Cooking Reality Show - ‘Sanjeev Kapoor Ke Kitchen Khiladi’.
Chef Seth, has extensive experience in international product development as well, creating global flavours for every kitchen through the frozen food and ready-to-eat medium. These products were widely recognized globally and awarded a number of prestigious awards, namely in Boston Seafood Show and European Seafood Exposition in Brussels.
Executive Director, K Hospitality Corp
Karan Kapur has been with K Hospitality Corp since the past decade, and is part of the strategic decision making, business development and operations strategy roll out for the group.
With an expertise in business administration, finance and economics, backed by his education in various universities abroad, Karan believes in being a hands-on leader and believes in actively participating in the operations of the group to facilitate growth and expansion.
Karan Kapur is the Executive Director of K Hospitality Corp, one of India’s largest home-grown hospitality and food service corporations.
A graduate from Northwestern University in Economics, and from Kellogg School of Management, where he received a Certification in Finance. After setting up new businesses for the organization, Karan returned back to the US to acquire his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
He played an active part in the setup and launch of Travel Food Services, the travel retail vertical under K Hospitality Corp.
Karan currently heads the Indian and International food services verticals of K Hospitality Corp which include some of the acclaimed brands – Copper Chimney, Bombay Brasserie, Punkah House, Bombay Borough, Blue Sea Banquets, Pavitra Catering, amongst others; along with the recent foray into International QSR growth with the launch of Domino's Pizza in the African subcontinent.
At a group level, Karan is part of the strategic decision making, business development and operations strategy roll out for K Hospitality Corp, and has played an active role is building the organizational capabilities to scale up to over 6000 employees today.
Co-Founder, Samosa Singh
"Think Big! Trust Yourself and Make it Happen”, this is the mantra that Nidhi Singh, Co-Founder of Samosa Singh lives by.
Nidhi was heading the Business development vertical for a US based healthcare company, BioXcel Corporation. She worked a decade before quitting her satisfying job to start Samosa Singh.
She aspires to offer nostalgic and Indian delicacies both online and offline. She believes that the goal is to recreate and dominate the Indian snack category.
Her experience has enabled her to establish strong client bases that have assisted in reaching out at the corporate level for the business's growth potential. Her management and sales experience aided exponential growth and was critical in steering the startup by establishing a strong and healthy brand image.
Having a vision for developing healthy and hygienic food in India. Nidhi recognized a huge market opportunity and reached out to 10,000 customers in one day, delivering the samosas.
Co-Founder and CEO, HungerBox
Sandipan Mitra is the Chief Executive Officer of HungerBox – an institutional food technology company he co-founded in 2016, with Uttam Kumar, which helps institutions manage their F&B services effectively. It serves marquee clients across various sectors like corporates, manufacturing facilities, hospitals, malls, and multiplexes with the help of a comprehensive product suite built from the ground up to offer a seamless, digital cafeteria experience.
HungerBox currently manages over 550 cafeterias and works with more than 900 food partners to serve a user base of 1.2 million and handles 12 million orders every month. HungerBox counts 8 of the top 11 private sector employers in the country as its clients.
Prior to starting HungerBox, Sandipan co-founded HungryZone - South East Asia’s 1st online food ordering portal which saw a successful exit when it got acquired by FoodPanda.
An MBA by profession, Sandipan has worked with organizations like Wipro and Yahoo before venturing into his entrepreneurial journey. Fortune India featured Sandipan in its 2021, 40 Under 40 list of India's Brightest Young Entrepreneurs.
Managing Partner, Street Storyss and Sindh Kitchen
Akshay Luthria is a dynamic industry professional and restaurateur with over 15 years of experience.
His passion for hospitality projects led him to operate as a partner at Lemp Brew by Lemp Brewing Co., America’s first Lager beer brewers and one the most legendary brewing brands.
He has also opened his successfully running restaurants in Bengaluru and operating as a managing partner at Street Storyss and Sindh Kitchen.
Pastry Chef, Co-founder and Director of Lavonne Academy of Baking Science and Pastry Arts
The bakery industry in India is the largest of the food processing segments with an estimated annual turnover of about $ 7.60 billion in 2020. The growth and spread of the bakery market have thrived on highly skilled bakers who have rattled the global industry as well.
Chef Avin Thaliath is one such name all pastry chefs and chocolatiers reckons with. An educationist at heart, the talented Chef’s mission is to spread joy with his insights and motivate others to find solace in this beautiful form of art.
Currently serving as the Co-Founder and Director of Academics at Lavonne Academy of Baking Science and Pastry Arts, India, Chef Avin’s desire and ambition to set up a specialized baking school in India, came true when Lavonne was born.
Hailing from Kerala, Chef Avin’s mother played a pivotal role in shaping his career and largely influenced him to dive into the culinary world. He was awarded a bronze medal in 2004 during his Bachelor of Hotel Management degree from Bangalore University. He further stimulated his field of interest, by taking up advanced level program in Chocolaterie and Sugar at Feves the Choco Creation of Pastry Fine Arts, Malaysia. He also holds the credit of being a Golden Certificate Awardee of Vatel Scholarship, Nimes, France.
After his studies in France, Chef Avin also interned under Chef Antonio Texeira before working with Le Granier A Pain, Paris, Paris Mamamia, Institut Vatel, Nimes and also Rhone Valley in France. After his stint in France, he worked with Indian giants like The Taj Hotels and The Orchid Hotels. Chef Avin was also appointed as a member of WACS (World Association of Chef’s Society), SICA (South Indian Culinary Association), and IFCA (Indian Federation of Chefs Association).
Rising up as a skilled dignitary in his field, Chef Avin steered the grounds of academic prowess as author of a number of academic journals, books, and monographs and has presented award-winning papers at top-level industry summits. He also served as assistant professor at the prestigious Christ University, Bangalore, India and has been associated with WorldSkills Org, since 2016 and has been representing India with skills from across the country at a global level. As someone who believes learning never stops, he competed his PhD in oenology studies and was in The Harun list for the most enterprising entrepreneurs of India. At present he is vice-president for the Pastry Council of India.
Soon, Chef Avin will launch his book “The Science in the Art of Baking”, which he has been working on for past 10 yrs.
Anand has around 16 years of experience from both an industry and consulting perspective. Anand is currently a Partner with the Strategy & Operations practice in Deloitte based out of Bangalore. He is a graduate from BITS Pilani and has completed his MBA from IIM Indore and PhD from IIM Bangalore. Anand started his career with GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare. He has been in sales and brand roles for nutritional food brands such as Horlicks & Boost. Prior to Deloitte, Anand has been a part of the management consulting practice at KPMG for the past 8 years and has worked on over 90 engagements. His work has primarily been in the consumer markets domain across various sectors such as Retail, FMCG, Agribusiness, and Education. Anand led the channel and salesforce effectiveness solution for the practice.
Managing Director, V&RO Hospitality
Dawn Thomas has finished B.Tech from M.S Ramaiah Institute of Technology, Bangalore. At the age of 17, Dawn co-founded Rices Obliquity (a clubbing community) to bring all of Bangalore together for incredible nightlife experiences and even joined hands with Sunburn and co-produced concerts of the likes of David Guetta, Avicii, Hardwell, Dada Life, Matzo, etc.
Just as most creators are - he is very particular about the brand image the company puts out and occasionally has taken up the responsibility of design & artworks himself in the beginning of his entrepreneurial journey.
In 2018, Dawn Thomas started working on building V&RO Hospitality as the CEO & Co-founder. VRO Hospitality, is one of the fastest growing hospitality chains in India which is the parent company of Popular Restaurant brands like Hangover, Badmaash, Nevermind, Cafe Noir, Tycoons, Plan B & Mirage. V&RO Hospitality takes pride in its repertoire of multi-format restaurants, cafes, lounges across 22 outlets in India
Under the leadership of Dawn Thomas, V&RO Hospitality also acquired F&B brands like Fava, Cafe Noir, Plan B, Caperberry, and One Night in Bangkok amidst the pandemic and also ventured into cloud kitchen brands with Burger & Beyond, Holy Doh to adjust to the new world of dinning
V&RO Hospitality has successfully raised an amount of $3million in a mix of equity and debt funding in Series A funding led by CreedCap Asia
Dawn Thomas is now focused on the growth mode of the company and with this fresh round of funding he aims to keep V&RO Hospitality on the trajectory of success.
Channel and Customer Marketing Manager – South India
10+ Year of Experience in Out of home F&B Space and part of two successful product launches in South.
Chief Strategy Officer, Third Wave Coffee
Started from 25 Cafes at CAFÉ COFFEE DAY in the Northern India as a Territory head advanced to a National head leading about 1400+ cafes & 400 kiosk spread across the country with a team strength of almost 8000 employees. With the retail experience and with the astute relationship have managed to open cafes at about 130+ cities across the country. Have been instrumental in scaling up the Café Division from 100 to 800 CR (pre covid). Setting sales goals basis the annual business plan & driving the team to achieve the set topline targets has been the key primary task.. Driving ops team to deliver organizational goals and deliver best customer experience was the motto.
Last 1 year, the journey at TWC as a Chief Strategy officer one of the key focus areas of my profile has been expansion. The strategy used in sequencing new outlet launches, training the team on negotiation skills, ensuring profitability of every store, data-driven decision-making in finalizing newer locations combined with teamwork has resulted in the launching of 70+ successful new outlets in less than a year. Still a long way to go with the targets that we have set for ourselves, but I am excited to be part of that journey that will surely help us build a strong Indian origin brand called Third Wave Coffee.
Ankur is Principal with the global management consulting firm – Kearney. He is a practitioner within Consumer Industries and Retail Practice. He has engaged with multiple Indian and global food retail companies. The said engagements cover a variety of topics ranging from cost improvement, Sales and operations planning, store operations optimization and growth strategy. Across these engagements, Ankur has been actively involved in both strategy development and ensuring last mile implementation.
Mohammed Ali Shah is COO at FreshMenu. He is an experienced Operations Supervisor with a demonstrated history of working in the food & beverages industry. Ali joined FreshMenu in 2015 as Operations Manager. He is highly skilled in Operations Management, Microsoft Excel, Customer Service, Sales, and Business Development. He is a Strong operations professional with a Master of Business Administration - MBA focused in Operations Management and Supervision.
Culinary Director, Charcoal Concepts
To say that Shikha Nath is passionate about food is an understatement. Discovering the best that India has to offer, and sharing it with the world, is what she brings to the Copper Chimney, Bombay Brasserie and Bombay Borough tables.
Having been with the K Hospitality Corp group for over two and a half decades, she's worn several hats, along with being Culinary Director for Charcoal Concepts, the specialist Indian F&B vertical under K Hospitality Corp.
She's travelled across the length and breadth of the country with her young team of chefs, identifying unique ingredients, understanding India's rich culinary history and bringing constantly evolving, fresh ideas to keep reinventing the foodscape for each brand, based on the it's distinct identity. Mrs Nath has also played a key role towards the setup, growth and expansion of restaurants across different formats in India as well as Internationally
Chairman & Managing Director, Cremica Food Industries Limited
Mr. Bector started his career in 1987; post completion of B.E. in Industrial & Production Engineering. His initial endeavours included the establishment of a modern bread plant which was soon followed by a world class biscuit plant. His focus remained on expanding the business which saw him soon joining hands with Mc Donald's to become one of their biggest suppliers in India. Mr. Bector's efforts led to a JV with two companies- Quaker Oats Company (USA) for manufacturing of ketchup, mayonnaise and other liquid condiments and the other with EBI Foods (UK) for manufacturing of battering and breading pre-mixtures. Currently he is Chairman of CII NR Agriculture Council and Member of various Punjab Government Committees. In the 3rd National Convention on Entrepreneurship 2013, he was awarded 'Entrepreneur of the Year' and in 'Mc Donald's APMEA 2013 Supplier Business Forum' the Company received 'Mc Donald's Asia Pacific Award for Innovation
Chef Partner, SodaBottleOpenerWala
Anahita N.Dhondy is the Chef Partner at SodaBottleOpenerWala. After studying at IHM – Aurangabad, Anahita worked in four different hotels in three different cities before she took off to pursue her dream to gain the Le Grand Diplome from Le Cordon Blue. Bakery and confectionary is her passion and her adventurous journey with food gets a homecoming with SodaBottleOpenerWala to be close to her Parsi roots. Says Anahita N. Dhondy laughingly, “We Parsis are a hard lot to get. I’ve been confused most of the time as I’m still pretty young, but they are complex characters, with highly developed senses, from humour to food! I come from a family of creative people (and crazy like any other Parsi home), where there is always something hustling and bustling and never a quiet moment. Like every household in India and across the globe, women hold a special place, and this is not because they cook, it’s because they care and thus cook for the family. My mother and grandmothers were more ambitious. They know lots and lots of dishes, different cuisines and been increasing their knowledge bank for years with magazines and books…Parsi cuisine is simple as its complex. I could go on and on, but simply it comes down to “say a small thank you everyday’ and ChaloJumwaChaloJi! – (come let’s have a meal). It has become the most important and popular chant at any Parsi celebration–we look forward to serving you
Some people know their calling almost as soon as they are born. Some people realize it when they turn five – like Chef Koushik, or The Mad Chef. In fact, for him the urge to cook and create was more than a passion: it was a compulsion. School done, he went straight to IHM, Bangalore. He was in the right place at the right time. Indians were just beginning to explore new flavours and culinary experiences. Restaurants were THE ‘thing’. The Mad Chef was on a roll. Small kiosks, wayside bakeries, fine dining restaurants, or 100 seater casual diners sought him out. His magic at the stoves quickly became legendary. Today, his company, Eatitude has the right attitude towards food and hospitality. Chef Koushik’s projects span India, his expertise touches all aspects of food. Projects he’s worked on include restaurants and cafes such as Fromage, The Tickle Truck (an Ice Cream Truck concept)Maplai-Savour SouthIndia, Jonah’s Bistro, Cleo’s Grill, Koala Joes, Sloppy Joes, Illusions-The Madras Pub,Peaches, Gokulams, Java Green, Dewberry’s, Soup and Salad Café, the Bayleaf, Mash atBesant Nagar, and several others. His current projects include a revamp of the menu at The Mayflower in T. Nagar, Chennai where he has introduced a variety of Pan-Asian dishes, thin crust pizzas and more, and a new south Indian restaurant, Aadhirai which offers traditional vegetarian and meat dishes with a contemporary spin. With several exciting projects in the pipeline, his repertoire is increasing and his demand grows.
Chairman, Ambuja Neotia Group
World is committed to making participation in the event a harass ment free experience for everyone, regardless of level experience gender, gender identity and expression
Executive Director, K Hospitality
Karan Kapur has been with K Hospitality Corp since the past decade, and is part of the strategic decision making, business development and operations strategy roll out for the group. With an expertise in business administration, finance and economics, backed by his education in various universities abroad, Karan believes in being a hands-on leader and believes in actively participating in the operations of the group to facilitate growth and expansion. Karan Kapur is the Executive Director of K Hospitality Corp, one of India’s largest home-grown hospitality and food service corporations. A graduate from Northwestern University in Economics, and from Kellogg School of Management, where he received a Certification in Finance. After setting up new businesses for the organization, Karan returned back to the US to acquire his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School. He played an active part in the setup and launch of Travel Food Services, the travel retail vertical under K Hospitality Corp. Karan currently heads the Indian and International food services verticals of K Hospitality Corp which include some of the acclaimed brands – Copper Chimney, Bombay Brasserie, Punkah House, Bombay Borough, Blue Sea Banquets, Pavitra Catering, amongst others; along with the recent foray into International QSR growth with the launch of Domino's Pizza in the African subcontinent.
Television celebrity, Masterchef India judge, author, restaurateur, food film producer and benefactor, chef Ranveer Brar is one of the most celebrated chefs in the country. He has set up restaurants in India (including a heritage hotel, Alila Fort Bishangarh) and abroad and curated the menu of many more (including cruise kitchens aboard Royal Caribbean). His popularity on television is matched by his tremendous fan following on social media as well. Getting the basics right and revering the kitchen as an artist would his/her studio, are mantras he lives by and propagates to others as well. He also pioneered the first ever Twitter video show called Ranveer On The Road, covering new destinations each season and exploring their cuisines and cultures. For someone who propounds the theory of cuisine being an extension of culture, he strongly upholds the belief of travel making a good chef better. An avid photographer with a keen eye for details, his love of art flows into his food styling and photographs as well. With a bestseller in his kitty, a popular host and judge on television and an artist both in and out of the kitchen, chef Brar calls himself a food-sufi on a constant culinary quest.
Co-founder, Dineout.Co.In Sahil Jain is the Co-Founder at dineout with special focus on building innovative & scalable tech products. Sahil is responsible for the complete product development and growth/retention strategies at dineout. He co-founded dineout in early 2012 and positioned it as the premier table reservation service in India. Since then dineout has grown multifold, raised a round of angel investment in late 2012 and in April 2014 it was successfully acquired by Times Internet. Currently, dineout is the largest table reservation platform in the country and has grown to 8 cities with more than 200,000 diners on a monthly basis. Sahil is a Bachelor in Electronics & Communication Engineering from B.M.S. College of Engineering, Bengaluru and later completed his MBA in Finance, Marketing and Strategy from IIM Kozhikode. He has explored diverse avenues like web analytics, call centre analytics and business forecasting for Fortune 500 technology and telecom clients in the US, before exploring his entrepreneurial side.
Indian celebrity chef, entrepreneur and television personality. Kapoor hosted the TV show Khana Khazana, the longest running show of its kind in Asia which was broadcast in 120 countries and in 2010 had more than 500 million viewers. He is also the first chef in the world to own a 24X7 food and lifestyle channel
Saransh Goila is a young and dynamic Indian chef who has become famous with his dish “Goila Butter Chicken” with a guest appearance on MasterChef Australia. Goila Butter Chicken is a cloud kitchen brand with its foot print in India and the UK. He is also the founder of Covid Meals for India that helped 400k people in the pandemic. Some of his accolades include being a part of the prestigious Forbes Celebrity 100 of 2019, and was recognised as one of the Top 10 chefs in the country.
Executive Director, Mad Over Donuts
With rich experience in the field of F&B, Tarak Bhattacharya has to his credit the growth of Mad Over Donuts from a mere 12 store set-up in Mumbai to a chain of 60 stores across the country today. A multi-faceted personality, Tarak is at the helm of activities at Mad Over Donuts handling diverse aspects of operations, planning and human resources. Under Tarak’s leadership, Mad Over Donuts has won many awards and accolades across various platforms with over 10 million delighted guests. Having started his career at RKHS as a Management Trainee, Tarak then moved to one of India’s first and most successful coffee brands - Barista where he then went on to Head Operations for India and International Business. He was later appointed as the COO by MGH Restaurants Pvt. Ltd. to handle 2 of their popular brands Nando’s (South African Peri-peri brand of Restaurants) and Barista for their Bangladesh and Nepal markets. In the year 2011 Tarak took up the position of COO at Himesh Foods Pvt. Ltd. for their Singaporean based gourmet brand, Mad Over Donuts which is one of the first entrants in the donuts industry in India. He recently got promoted to Executive Director, a complete people’s person, Tarak loves networking and is always up to date with the latest in the Industry. An avid traveler, Tarak’s favorite destinations include Dubai & Langkawi.
The name, sure, does ring a bell loud and clear! Love to eat took him into corners of the home in the kitchen where children rarely venture. But, it was this 'wanderful' attitude that Vicky owes his initiation into food to. His sails manouvered him to engage with various global culinary traditions on his premier appointment aboard the Queen Elizabeth 2. Six world cruises and cruising through many markets of the world along the way, Vicky went to live and learn in Genoa, Italy. Vicky is now an independent consultant and has also launched Speak Burgers, a gourmet burger delivery venture during the pandemic. His Youtube channel Vickysworld will see a fresher avatar as he actively partners with Tourism Australia, NDTV Good Times and Living Foodz in a show that features Aussie Chefs and produce. He has recently produced a web series around Lima Peru and plans to produce more such culinary expeditions. He is now looking to franchise his brand 'By VR' to various smart casual gourmet eateries. Vicky's popularity has quadrupled with shows like Vickypedia, Gourmet Central, Vicky Goes Veg amongst others. His cookbook Vicky Goes Veg has won the Gourmand Award for Best Vegetarian Cook book 2015. Music, writing, learning and researching flavours help Vicky unwind after long work hours in the kitchen.
Owner, Café Delhi Heights
Entrepreneur Vikrant Batra, an established stalwart in the Indian Food and Beverage Industry, is the mind and force behind the ingenious concepts of his stand-alone ventures. A graduate from Hindu College, Delhi University, Vikrant has completed a Restaurant Management course from the University of California. He completed his MBA from Fore School of Management. Starting off by working in his inherited business at Batra Banquets, Vikrant opened his first Delhi Heights Restaurant in Rajouri Garden in 2009. In 2011, he inaugurated Café Delhi Heights, which currently has nine outlets across Delhi NCR. In his words, 'Delhi has witnessed the rule of many Emperors from varied cultures and regions of the world. Therefore it has adopted all kinds of traits in its culture. Food being an integral part of that adaption, we at CDH have tried to encapsulate all those flavors giving you the look and feel of the capital in its totality.” He plans to take this legacy forward by making it a global venture. Under his guidance, Cafe Delhi Heights has been recognized by various fraternities in numerous times. Recently , Vikrant won the 'Restaurateur of the Year - North Region' at the Indian Restaurant Awards 2017. Vikrant Batra is a passionate Entrepreneur, who enjoys making people happy with his food and loves when people leave his outlets with a fulfilling contended smile on their faces.
Founder & Managing Director, Massive Restaurants Pvt. Ltd.
Perfecting the science of molecular gastronomy with India’s spice and flavour, Zorawar Kalra is a name that commands respect in the Indian hospitality industry. The face of Massive Restaurants, Zorawar Kalra proudly tells the tale of a brand that majestically owns and operates trendsetting and critically acclaimed brands. Spearheading Massive Restaurants that includes Farzi Café, KODE, Masala Library by Jiggs Kalra, Made In Punjab, BO-TAI and PaPa Ya under its wing, it has been an adrenaline-charged journey for him as he watches it grow exponentially. Owing to its success stories, the brand has recently raised INR 160 crores from Gaja Capital for the purpose of expansion. With strong foresight, he is a visionary who aims to launch properties in 10 new cities within this year end. Spread over 10 outlets in India, Farzi Café gets ready to spread its wings to London and 6 other cities in the Middle East. Extending to 5 outlets in the country, PaPa Ya sets the Asian notes right, while other brands like KODE and Made in Punjab are in the nascent stages for an international launch soon enough. With USA, UK and the Middle East on Kalra’s radar for international expansions, it is safe to assume that Massive Restaurants is going the right way. Considered as the ‘Man with a Vision on a Mission’ &‘The Prince of Indian Cuisine’, he has been recognized amongst the 50 Most Influential Young Indians by GQ India(thrice);GQ Men of the Year – Restaurateur of 2017;Economic Times 40 Under 40; Forbes Tycoons of Tomorrow; Restaurateur of the Year Award, 2014 & 2017,Times of India & Vir Sanghvi Awards; a Finalist in E&Y Entrepreneur of the year 2017; HT Crystals, 2014 and Entrepreneur of the Year in Service Business - F & B Services, Entrepreneur India Awards, 2014. December 2012 was a milestone for him, as it saw the launch of his latest venture Massive Restaurants Pvt. Ltd., which in its first year of operations won over 19 prestigious awards under various categories. Zorawar Kalra has also been a judge on Masterchef India Season 5.
CEO, Burger King India
Mr. Rajeev Varman is the Chief Executive Officer at Burger King India Limited. Prior to this, Rajeev was the Senior Vice-President & General Manager North Western Europe of Burger King Worldwide. He brings over 2 decades of rich and diverse experience in F&B operations to Burger King Corporation. Rajeev has been associated with Burger King Corporation for 18 years and has held numerous positions in the Canadian and European operations. Most recently, Rajeev was responsible for Burger King’s turnaround in the UK market and was also spearheading the North Western Europe division. Previously, Rajeev held various senior management positions in Canada, where he implemented a ‘Value’ strategy, new product development, led strong franchise growth and improved the operations matrix. Rajeev holds an MBA from the Golden Gate University, California, and a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Bangalore University.
Co-founder, Daryaganj Hospitality
Hospitality success stories are often dominated by those strongly associated with the industry. However, Amit Bagga, with his roots in a family business of automobiles, is an exception. He has cemented his place, one successful venture after the other since 2010 through sheer business acumen and love for excellence. Today he is CEO and co-founder of Daryaganj Hospitality, which owns the much-loved brand Daryaganj - By the Inventors of Butter Chicken and Dal Makhani. From a single restaurant in April 2019, it grew to 4 outlets across top locations in Delhi-NCR in just 1 year and is growing further. It also recovered fast from COVID-19 implications and has proven to be resilient. International locations like Sydney, Dubai and Toronto are planned for 2021. Amit’s enterprising nature has helped him find success in other industries as well. He is the co-founder of a digital out-of-home (DOOH) media business called EyeTalk Media Ventures which owns 2,500-plus digital displays in 30 cities across India and around the globe. He has been venerated as Fastest Growing Entrepreneur by a leading publication in India, while the India Today Group has featured him in a list of Top 50 Young Leaders of Delhi in their Mail Today newspaper. He has also been awarded as the Entrepreneur of the year for the F & B industry by Indian Achievers Forum to name a few. A forward-thinking and visionary individual, Amit Bagga is, without a doubt, a restaurateur to watch out
Chef and Restaurateur
Saby, who has a cult following in the culinary world, hails from a mofussil town in West Bengal – Asansol. As the President of the Young Chefs’ Forum of the Indian Federation of Culinary Associations (IFCA), the dynamic Chef also happens to be the youngest Indian Chef to don the hat of a Corporate Chef while at Olive Bar and Restaurants. Armed with the knowledge that he has gathered over the years, Saby is almost an institution in himself. Chef finds reminiscent of his contribution to the profession, though his biggest reward comes from “cooking for a fellow human being.” Incidentally, he has wowed the likes of the Ambani's and the Bachchan’s with his culinary skills. A philanthropist, an educator and mentor to young Chefs, this dynamic Chef-entrepreneur is the founder member of prominent Indian Chef’s associations – IFCA, WICA (West India), SICA (South India) – and is also a member of and mentor in the Indian Culinary Federation (ICF). Promoting sustainable food and slow food brings him on the global Slow Food alliance – Craft Chef’s Guild. Featured prominently in all contemporary electronic and print media – Fat ya Fit Chef (CNN-IBN), a culinary judge on MasterChef India, among others – Chef Saby has wowed audiences with his new age cookery show – The Urban Cook (Zee Khanna Khazana, which is now Living Foodz). Chef Saby is the only recipient of the most coveted National Tourism Award, for “Best Chef of India”, awarded by the President of India. Through Fabrica by Chef Saby – his restaurant solutions venture – he has curated some of the most-talked about restaurant brands now running successfully across the length and breadth of the country.
Chief Sales Officer, Zomato
Rakesh Ranjan is Chief Sales Officer at Zomato. Earlier, he was Vice President - Food Delivery Business at Zomato. He joined Zomato as the Global Sales and Operations Head for the food delivery business. Before joining Zomato, Rakesh worked with Boston Consulting Group (BCG) as the project leader and worked across multiple sectors with a focus on business turnaround, growth, portfolio strategy, and large-scale organization-wide transformation. He has also been associated with two portfolio firms of Blackstone as the business manager where he was responsible for growth (horizontal across the value chain) and new markets. Rakesh has also worked as a Principal Consultant with the Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC) in its strategy vertical. A post graduate from Indian School of Business in Finance and Marketing, Rakesh has been a receiver of scholarship of merit. He has his bachelor’s degree in electronics from Netaji Subhash Institute of Technology.
CMO, KFC India
Moksh has recently taken over as the CMO for KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken) in India. He is an experienced marketer with over 14 years of experience across FMCG and Food retail. Having spent almost eight years at Yum! Brands, he started off in Innovation – leading a slew of successful new product and platform launches, before moving onto the Brand Activation role – leading the Business Calendar and Campaigns. Prior to this, Moksh worked in CavinKare India - in both sales and marketing. He has done his MBA from Xavier Institute of Management, Bhubaneswar, and his graduation from St. Xaviers, Kolkata. Passionate about music, loves cricket & tennis and is enjoying fatherhood with his 5 year old son & 2 year old daughter – those are some more nuggets about him beyond his work profile!
Associate Director, Silver Beach Entertainment & Hospitality
Syesha Kapoor is the Associate Director at Silver Beach Entertainment and Hospitality Pvt. Ltd. She spearheads the Marketing, Sales, Communications, Content, Creatives and more with over 10 brands across 18 restaurants under the company. She has worked for over 10 years and gained knowledge and experience in the Hospitality industry. After pursuing her bachelors at at London School of Marketing, Syesha applied to Les Roches School of Hotel Management for MBA in Hospitality. After completing her education, she pursued her passion for the Hospitality sector, working at JSM, where she spearheaded Shiro, California Pizza Kitchen, Pinkberry & Trader Vics and also was part of the pre-opening team for a few restaurants involving herself in all the aspects for gaining knowledge in the field. In 2014, she moved to Dubai and worked with Zomato as a key accounts Manager. She has worked with some of the key mega corporates like Starwood, Whistle Group, Namshi & Dubizzle whilst her stint in the UAE. Towards the end of 2014, she came back to Mumbai and joined Silver Beach Entertainment and Hospitality full-time. Her passion for the industry is so strong that she single handedly looks into most of the work at all the restaurants. Some key restaurants are Opa Kipos, Estella, Radio Bar, Nom Nom (Bandra and Versova), Silver Beach Café (Juhu, Lokhandwala and Dubai), Copa, Ministry of Salads to name a few. She looks into every detail from the menu to the sales to the promotions and offers at each outlet. Her innovation and love for food has been the core to her success as her vision for the company stays strong with quality and creativity.
Chief Strategy Officer, McDonald’s India (West and South)
Akshay Jatia is leading Business Strategy, Consumer Technology and Innovation for the company. Akshay joined McDonald’s India in 2015 and over the last 7 years has worked cross-functionally to understand the nuances of strategy, operations, marketing, IT and synergized them to grow the brand and has successfully led many business critical projects. Akshay’s McDonald’s journey started as General Manager – Business Extension and he played a key role in growing and consolidating the company’s brand extensions - McDelivery, McCafé and McBreakfast. He led the launch of the digital delivery business for McDonald’s, in early 2015, when the Online Home Delivery Market in India was almost non-existent. Akshay set up a ‘digital delivery’ team at HRPL that comprised a group of cross-functional experts across customer insight, analytics, operations, logistics, digital marketing and technolog and launched the McDonald’s digital delivery platform – McDelivery app in 2016. Akshay’s also spearheaded the project to offer customer a new McDonald’s experience and thus launched the ‘Experience of The Future’ (EOTF) restaurants. These new restaurants gave customers a dramatically different McDonald’s with the contemporary design and the cool, new look integrate technology across all customer touchpoints. These restaurants had self-ordering kiosks, tablets and air chargers and a table tracker to enable table service – a first for a QSR in India. During the pandemic, while McDelivery ensured business continuity, Akshay also led the launch of an innovative new channel – On-The-Go, that enabled customers to order food on the McDelivery app and collect it from a pre-designated spot close to the restaurant. This new format became a key growth driver during the lockdown and grew 3 times in 3 quarters, bringing new customers to the brand fold. Akshay holds a Bachelor of Science degree with majors in Finance and International Business from Leonard N. Stern School of Business, New York University. In his free time, he enjoys listening to music, reading, and keeping himself fit while indulging in food. He has been recognised as the 21st century Inspirational Icon and bagged the Dedicated Stalwart Award for bringing in the tech revolution at Westlife and McDonald's
Thomas Fenn is an Economics graduate from St Stephen's College and has worked as an analyst with an infrastructure consultancy for two years before handling operations, marketing & business development for the Stellar Children's Museum, Ambience Mall Gurgaon since its inception in 2012. He co-founded Mahabelly with Zachariah Jacob and Prem Kiran in March 2015. Mahabelly is a specialty restaurant serving authentic Kerala cuisine located at DLF Avenue Saket, New Delhi & Gurgaon. Thomas is also Member, Managing Committee of the NRAI overseeing their interests in E-Comm Policy, Online Ordering & Logistics.
Managing Partner, Chrome Communications & Media India LLP
He is currently a partner at some of the most popular casual dining bars in the city such as Butterfly High, The Bigg Small Cafe + Bar, Oi Lat-Am Kitchen & Bar and LILT. It was during his education at the HR College Of Commerce & Economics, at the age of 16 years when his passion for food, urge to try new cuisines & new restaurants drove him to start his own company – Chrome Asia which was an events & marketing consultancy agency. Operating with Chrome for over 9 years now, it was soon enough that Pawan saw a huge gap in the market where a lot of great concepts couldn’t sustain themselves. Pawan’s first restaurant venture ‘Butterfly High’ started with an instant connect between him and food industry veteran Narayan Poojari (20+ Outlets Of Shiv Sagar & Mahesh Lunch Home). It was Mr.Narayan’s existing outlet Fish’n’Bait in BKC which was rebranded and re-launched as Butterfly High – An All Day Casual Dining Bar where Pawan was roped in as Managing Partner. In early 2019, Pawan started Oi Kitchen & Bar in Khar, which was an ingredient focussed & Chef Driven casual dining bar. A zero-waste concept where all ingredients that come to the restaurant are reused across multiple areas to produce no or minimal waste from the kitchen or the bar. Over the last 9 years of being in business, Pawan’s entrepreneurial journey has been nothing short of a mountain hike with a learning curve on each step. These experiences have been recognized by many from and outside the industry who have invited him to be a guest speaker and panelist at various events, including the Chef’s Connect 2017, DY Patil College Of Hospitality in 2018, TiE Smash Up At ISDI in 2018, RD National College in 2019 & many more. He was also awarded the Mid-Day Young Achievers award in 2019.
President & CBO, Domino's Pizza
An MBA from University of Wales, UK with an entrepreneurial bent of mind and successful in shaping winning Strategies. Raj has over 24 years of rich experience in FMCG & Retail industry with 6 yrs. at Asian Paints, 14 yrs. at Coca-Cola & now 3.5yrs.+ at Jubilant FoodWorks. He successfully heads the largest Domino’s market outside US, and manages 1450+ Domino’s restaurants in India, leads a large team of 30,000+ people and all functions of Operations, Marketing, Business Development, Projects, Training, Ops HR, Business Financeetc. i.e. end to end P&L responsibility. Raj has successfully turned around Domino’s business during tough Covid pandemic and has consistently delivered over 25% EBITDA in the last 5 Quarters. Jubilant market Cap has increased 5X to $7 Billion in last 3 years. He has sharp knack for Digital &known for Customer Obsession. His vision is to make Domino’s a Food Tech Powerhouse.
Raghav Verma is the co-founder of Chaayos, India's biggest Chai cafe, with 75+ cafes across India. He is also an IIT alumni. Raghav has been selected as one of the Forbes Asia '30 Under 30' in the Retail and E-Commerce Category in 2016. Under his leadership, Chaayos has also been felicitated for multiple awards including '25 Most Promising Entrepreneurial Brands' by WPP, 'Most Innovative Concept' by Restaurant India Magazine and 'Greatest Startup of the Year' by DM Asia.
Parthiv is an engineer and an IIM-L alum by education. He started his career with Wipro Technologies in a technical role post which he moved to GFL as the AVP of investments. Post GVFL, Parthiv joined PremjiInvest where he lead public market investments. Prior to founding Petpooja in 2014, Parthiv worked as a senior team member at an energy analytics startup, Ecolibrium. At Petpooja, Parthiv is responsible for strategy, product management, partner ecosystem, and finance. In his free time, Parthiv enjoys reading fiction.
Wendy's & Jamie's Italian India
Director, Wendy's & Jamie's Italian India & Owner IMM Mr. Jasper Reid is an entrepreneur and the founder of International Market Management Ltd (IMM), a London firm specialising in setting up international consumer brands in Asia and India. Mr. Jasper is a director of the holding companies of Wendy's and Jamie's Italian in India and of IMM in the UK. IMM has supported a range of brands with their international expansion including PizzaExpress in India and China, John Lewis, Busaba Eathai, Whittard of Chelsea and Agent Provocateur. Graduated from University of Oxford Jasper joined the Swire Group, one of Asia's leading business houses. He held a range of management roles including with Cathay Pacific Airways in Mumbai in 1997. There he established one of the first data centre BPO operations. Jasper writes a column for the Wall Street Journal on living in India.
Entrepreneur, Hotelier & Designer
‘If a great business is a coin, innovation and social impact must be its two sides.’ These words by Jimmy Mistry resonate with his three-decade-long entrepreneurial journey. Synonymous with the brand Della, Jimmy is the founder of Della Group. He is an avid Designer, Hotelier, and Social Entrepreneur at heart, he started his journey in 1991 with a pest control company, not afraid of taking up challenges and facing failures and today, he has formed his 25 year legacy across various verticals. In 2021, he founded Della Leaders Club (DLC) –and innovated the World's 1st Business Platform that is currently present in 15 major Global cities such as New York, London, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok and plans to expand in 120 chapter cities in the next 5 years, currently having its offices set up in 7 countries across the world. With 25 years of unmatched experience and expertise in research, design, manufacturing, supply and execution his designs are created with the commitment to human centric approach to design, his passion, purpose, sensitivity and humility. It is with this belief that he has conceptualized one of India’s largest high-end turnkey luxury design concept and complete supply solutions for Home, Offices and Hotels. His adroit edifices have let no room for doubt. With no background in real estate or hospitality, he is a pioneer in experiential hospitality and won several accolades and awards for it. Today, Della Resorts ranks #1 on Trip Advisor in India and #2 in Asia as ‘Most Valued Luxury Resort’ With over 150+ features and 25+ awards in his name, Jimmy Mistry is indeed a multi faceted man.
Sr. VP- Culinary, Lite Bite Foods
Vineet Manocha, Sr. Vice President – Culinary at Lite Bite Foods Pvt. Ltd., has tapped his global experience to make signature dining a reality in all his endeavours. His interests and achievements go beyond simply a Chef’s normal kitchen profile. An alumnus of IHM Pusa, Vineet’s experience of over 25 years includes management tenures at renowned hotel chains like Oberoi, Hyatt and Radisson; flight kitchens and restaurant companies. Besides Delhi, he has also worked in Bahrain, Goa, Mumbai, Liverpool-UK, Philippines, Jeddah and Daman. Vineet also worked with Saudi Arabian Airlines, heading their menu planning and development worldwide catering to more than 60000 meals per day. Setting up F&B retail projects is Vineet’s strength. He is adept in F&B concepts, menu planning, designing new kitchens, managing PnL and heading large operations across the world. Thorough knowledge of ingredients, the science behind cooking, their application and adaptability, make his culinary creations, unique. He is also an avid trainer, F&B strategist and team builder. A HACCP trained internal auditor, has been a core team member for 5 ISO certifications in his career. He has several media articles to his credit and has recently been conferred the “Rashtriya Gaurav Award – 2017” for outstanding services, achievements, and contributions to Culinary.
Two young friends from Kolkata transformed a simple dumpling to a national phenomenon and cooked up an amazing success story within a span of 10 years. Established by Binod Homagai and Sagar Daryani, alumni of St. Xavier's College, Wow! Momo, a 280-crore company was built out of sheer passion and love. In their college, these two passionate individuals shared one more thing other than their classrooms; their love for the Tibetan dumpling. Sagar owed his love to a momo seller outside his school where he sampled a number of dumplings. When they discussed about their future plans, the idea to turn their favourite dish into a business model appealed to them. Although they were both offered lucrative jobs, they wanted to try their luck in business. Initial hiccups included the raising of funds where the respective families came to their rescue and the business started with an initial investment of Rs 30,000. Today Wow! Momo sells 2 lakh momos across the country every day with a whopping 85,000 being consumed in Kolkata alone. They have employed 1500 people in various outlets across India of which about 60% are specially-abled people from different NGOs. Variety and vision go hand in hand in Wow! Momo and by 2021, the brand aspires to go global with outlets in US, UK, Canada and other countries. A passionate speaker, Sagar has given business & motivational talks at various Business Schools & Entrepreneurship Cells across the country
Founder & CEO, Wat-a Burger
Farman Beig is the founder and CEO of Wat-a-Burger a dynamic burger joint, incepted and run by young minds with a sole mission to take fresh, delicious, yet affordable burgers to people. He takes care of the overall growth strategy at the brand and also manages the day-to-day operations. He ensures that the brand is firmly marching towards growth while ensuring quality, taste and uniqueness. Under the leadership of Farman, the brand has become the largest homegrown Burger Brand of India, spreadacross 16 cities and 9 states serving 8,000+ delicious burgers on a daily basis With a B.Tech degree from Amity University Delhi, Farman went on to bag a Master’s Degree in IT Business from Alliance Manchester Business School, England. After completing his education, Farman joined Sigma Enterprise in 2013 as a partner. He always knew that being into business is his true calling, but he still felt a little gap. As it is said, one needs to explore to find the right fit. Farman wanted to begin something from the scratch to global. After spending considerable time in research, a junk food lover Farman along with his friend Rajat decided to build a burger chain that would not only offer unique burgers but also maintain quality within the means. The idea was to build largest home-grown food chain. Apart from being an entrepreneur, Farman has also been on advisory board of a number of startups. He has also been an angel investor to a NCR based, supply chain automation startup- Adcount Technologies.
President, NRAI & Co-Founder & Director, Azure Hospitality Pvt. Ltd.
Kabir Suri is the Co-Founder & Director, Azure Hospitality, currently serves as the President of National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI). Kabir has been associated with NRAI since 2017 and was appointed as the Vice President in 2019. Pivotal in the growth and success of one of the fastest growing hospitality companies with popular brands under its wing such as Mamagato, Dhaba1986, Sly Granny and Foxtrot to name a few, he has been part of the industry for over a quarter of a century. Kabir believes that the F&B Industry is now at the cusp of a major change and he is excited to be a part of this. He strives to lead the Indian F&B Industry into a new era of prosperity, participation and positive perception which advances and safeguards the entrepreneurial spirit.
CEO, Nando's India
Experienced Chief Executive Officer with a demonstrated history of working in the hospitality industry. Strong business development professional skilled in Catering, Food & Beverage, Hospitality Management, Multi-Unit, and Menu Development.