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Retail Industry Experts Discuss the Next Billion-Dollar Ideas that Putting the Zing Back in Retail at IRF’14

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On the day one of the India Retail Forum 2014 industry stalwarts discussed the billion dollar ideas and breakthrough concepts that are putting the zing back in the retail. Moderator, Rahul Saigal, President, Geometry Global (Ogilvy Action) took off the session, who asked industry stalwarts to reveal their big ideas.

Rahul Singh, Founder & CEO of Beer Café shared “India has the third largest liquor consumption in the world. The big idea behind this concept is that Café concept is growing very widely in our country. So, he merged the Alco-beverage into a café concept.” He defined Beer as a social lubricant which brings people together.

Abhishek Dhingra, Co-Founder and ED, Mr. Pronto informed that Mr Pronto is the largest shoe repair store in the World. It uses company owned franchise operated model. The big idea behind this concept is cleaning and repairs of the shoes. CEO Arun Rajan then explained the concept of his brand. is a restaurant service, serving food to the passengers travelling through train. The passengers can order online through their website from any of the tied restaurants and the foos gets delivered to the passenger when the train reaches that stoppage. has association with 135 restaurants

After this, Vivek Prabhakar, Founder & CEO of Chumbak Design explained that his brand was formulated to add colour to India. They took design as a platform to innovate the product and take it to the consumer.

Sagar Daryani, Founder, Wow! Momo was the next to introduce his concept. He said they have simply played with product and done simple things with style.
Post the brand introduction, Rahul Saigal started posing questions to each of the billion dollar entrepreneurs. The first question was to Abhishek Dhingra about how did he came up with this idea to repair a shoe repair store. Mr Dhingra replied to this stating that their target market are men who wear shoes of Rs. 1500 and above, so the empty gap between sales and repairs if filled.

The second question was to Sagar Daryani. Saigal asked “what is the magic ingredient behind your brand? In reply to this, Daryanisaid that it’s all about innovation in today’s world, focus on the innovation aspect, create impressions in the minds of the consumer. Impressions can be dicerted the product look and field, packaging etc.

The next question was to Darrell Wisbey, Retail Mentor & Advisor (Philippines) about what made his idea big. He replied that ”It is very important to engage the customers whenever the customer looks at the new product. Singh asked him what comes in way of big opportunities and big idea? And if the government policy has to be impacted your business. He said liquor is a state policy and Central Policy.

Dhingra said, “is does labour and sourcing the right opportunity. He replied, “We are the best paymaster of the country. It is difficult customers and there are problems coz their account.”

The next questions was for Rahul Singh that what was to social. The question was directed towards knowing that. The reply to those was: Social media is compulsion for them in order to reach out to consumers as they can’t advertise on TV or Print and thus social media is a wat to engage the consumers and reach out with consumer. Rewards and coupons are also be taken thrre by their team.

Rahul Singh shared his experience in raising fund/ equity. He said that the SME’s have to follow a lot of compliances and India doesn’t have the ecosystem of funding the entrepreneurs. He said the key is to find the right funding and that funding only gives you the runway to your dreams. Sagar Daryani then added that funding is important, but what is more important is to get the right value at the right time in order to get the valuations grow.

The discussion was ended here and was open to questions to the audience. The question was posed to Rahull Saigal who was the moderator of the session. The question was: “How critical are innovations from a marketing or branding point of view?” To this he replied: “You cannot create a billion dollar only based on product attributes. You need to build an emotional content with the consumer. Branding and marketing makes your brand ore lovable and advertising is one aspect which stops new entrants to come and try to establish in the market. ”He thus said that, with the norms and regulations relaxing further the threat of neew entrents have increased. This can be fought only by making your brand more visible in front of the customer and making him connect with it.

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