Chief Operating Officer
Godrej Tyson Ltd.
Arabind Das is in the right place at the right time. The staggering interest and private investments in India’s grocery retail and foodservice start-ups are a pre-cursor to what analysts believe is the golden age of innovation in food consumption formats and habits in the country.
Das currently spearheads the operations at Godrej Tyson Foods Limited, India’s leading poultry and vegetarian products manufacturer and marketer with strong value-added brands such as Real Good Chicken and Real Good Yummiez.
Prior to joining Godrej Tyson, Das was the President at Vanity Case group of Companies. He has more than 29 years of experience in Business Management and Operations Management in dairy, processed foods, personal & home care and retail businesses, and has also held a wide range of leadership positions in India and overseas with leading companies such as Cadbury’s, Unilever, Dabur and Aditya Birla Group.
A Gold Medalist in M.Tech from National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal, Das is a specialist in turnaround strategy, operational/ supply chain strategy, cost management, food safety and quality, and project management & execution.
He has been trained on TPM by JIPM, Japan and was instrumental in turning around many operations and businesses in India and overseas.
A much sought after speaker on Operations Management, Das has spoken in various forums such as CII, Management Associations and Local Chambers. He has also been associated in various Task Forces in CII leading to policy debates.
As the operations head of a leading frozen food manufacturer, Das believes companies need to invest in back-end infrastructure to optimise the growing demand. “The last infrastructural step is proving to be a challenge,” he admits. “Which is why in the last three years, we have driven our investments towards setting up to freezers and chillers. And we will continue with that with almost Rs 10 crore in the years to come,” he says.
Godrej Tyson Foods’ CAGR is at 32 per cent, with the Real Good Chicken range growing at 16-18 per cent annually, and the Yummies frozen foods business enlarging by 33 per cent.
Referring to the astonishing growth accruing from tier II and II markets in India, Das says, “In 2010, we saw a 25 per cent growth out of the tier II and III cities, but in 2014, the generation of business has risen to a 45-50 per cent.”
Going forward, Godrej Tyson will be investing in developing distribution networks in Nagpur, Bhubaneswar, Patna, Ranchi, Guwahati, Shillong and Kochi, as these are the cities with the fastest escalation, Das notes. “These cities have seen an increase in the work-time of their residents, and most women have taken to employment. Consumers have adapted to these changes very rapidly in the past five years,” he adds.
On the product innovation front, Das points out that the company launches four to six products every year and this will continue. “We will soon expand into the breakfast market. The price ranges will be affordable, and our main creations will be on-the-move breakfasts for busy professionals,” he promises.