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Shachin Bharadwaj, CEO and founder, TastyKhana

Anil Mascarenhas / 18:21 , Nov 01, 2013

Shachin Bharadwaj, CEO and founder, TastyKhana. He has a Bachelor of Engineering (B.E) degree from the Maharashtra Institute of Technology, Pune. He previously worked with Synygy India and then moved onto building his own entrepreneurial project, TastyKhana. An aggressive entrepreneur and a people person, Shachin founded TastyKhana in 2007. TastyKhana has is now one of the leading online food ordering portals in the country and continues to grow by the day. TastyKhana, is headquartered in Pune. Shachin is a first generation self-motivated entrepreneur and is always striving to deliver quality service to his team and customers. His dedication and sheer persistence has helped TastyKhana reach where it is today. Shachin is a firm believer that no idea is bad and it is execution that finally matters. The aspects of his personality that reflect truly in TastyKhana today are transparency, honesty and high standards of work ethics. 


TastyKhana.com. TastyKhana is a leading online portal that facilitates ordering food online from over 5000 restaurants in the 7 cities they are present in namely Pune, Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi, Gurgaon, Faridabad, Ghaziabad.Tastykhana.com is a pioneer in setting high service standards for their customers. With unique and inimitable offers for customers, Tastykhana has revolutionized the food ordering industry. One of their flagship offering is the Corporate Privilege Card which allows employees to order food conveniently and on time through tastykhana.com. This unique card enables employees’ special discounts on all their online paid orders on TastyKhana.com. With this initiative, TK empowers corporates to enhance employee benefits.  Another very interesting campaign launched by Tastykhana.com is the Kadki Campaign. It is mainly targeted to all the customers who have a money crunch situation at the end of the month and TK helps them get yummy food for free or with lucrative discounts. TastyKhana also offer apps for AndroidiPhone and Blackberry.


Replying to Anil Mascarenhas of IIFL, Shachin Bharadwaj says, “At tastykhana.com, right from discovering multiple restaurant options, you can complete your transaction without any human interaction.”


Give us a brief overview of the online food business in India.

Online food business is one of the fastest growing sectors in the food industry today. There is clear channel switch happening in the mode of ordering and we see customers moving from phone ordering to online ordering (and mobile app). Dominos has led the way in promoting this aggressively.


Explain to us your business model. What got you started in this venture?

We make food ordering convenient for customers. Right from discovering multiple restaurant options, you can complete your transaction without any human interaction. Our services are free to user and we charge restaurants on every transaction. My personal need (tired of regularly ordering on phone) made me start this venture.


Have you seen similar business done by others in India or abroad? What inspired you?

Yes, this business is well-established in USA and Europe. The desire is to build a business in India which can help customers order more easily was the inspiration. 


What is the tie-up and revenue sharing arrangement you have with those whose food is available on your website?

Restaurants pay us a commission for every order they receive. It is a pay for performance revenue model. 


How do you ensure quality and delivery?

We vet the restaurants with basic information, before getting them on board and later our users help us flag the bad restaurants. 


Which are the cities you are present in?

8 Cities - Pune, Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi, Gurgaon, Noida, Faridabad, Ghaziabad. 


What are the opportunities and challenges in this business?

Opportunity is to tap the huge market of users who are still using phone ordering. With the food ordering delivery time being in minutes (unlike any other e-commerce) the challenges are to ensure fulfilment of orders in the fastest possible time.


How many restaurants have you partnered with? Is there a discount if it is ordered from your website?

5000+ restaurants. We keep running various promotions which help users get great deals across restaurants. 


What is the payment model? Does the money get credited to the restaurants or do you pay them later?

Payment model is a mix of online payment + cash on delivery. We pay the restaurants later. 


Is your partnership with Delivery Hero still on?

Yes. 


What is TastyKhana Trinkets account all about. What is the incentive to use this?

Trinkets are like a wallet for users. Here customer cannot load money directly but can use this as a vault for future ordering. Payments via Trinket are with zero failure rate, because this money is already pre-paid.


Do you have corporate registered? How many?

Yes, we do have corporate registered with us. Currently we are already tied up with 30 plus fortune 500 companies


What is the investment so far in this venture? Who funded the same?

We have a commitment of 5 million USD from Delivery Hero group. 


What is the cheapest and most expensive food available on your website and the rates?

Price range of food listed on the site, works across budget range of customers, with Rotis starting at Rs.5 and exotic dishes at fine dine restaurants which may cost in excess of Rs.1000 per dish. 


Brief us on your financials. What is the outlook?

We will generate business worth Rs.10 crore for restaurants this financial year and we aim to hit Rs.100 crore by year 2015. 


What is the shareholding pattern of the company? Any plans to raise funds or get listed?

We do not share the holding pattern in public. We may look to raise funds in the future for faster growth. Listing on markets has not been plannedyet.


What has been your happiest and worst moment in this journey of TastyKhana?

Happiest moment was when we were to start our first city (outside Pune) after 4yrs. Worst moment was when we were 2 weeks away from shutting down (financial bankruptcy) in mid 2008. 


How often do you order from the website?

3-4 times a month. 


Anything else you would like to add? Any interesting anecdotes from clients?

When you run a business over a period of time, you never realize how significant your contribution is to your partners. This was made known when one of partner brands mentioned that they today get 31% of the business from us. This meant every third rupee the business earned was via TastyKhana. This has made the restaurant completely stop spending on their own marketing and we work as partners in generating value for one another.