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Flistaa looks to expand beyond India – founder Harshvardhan Chhatbar

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The company have plans for hyper-growth in the next 5 years and to create a market for itself in UAE, Africa and Canada

Bengaluru: Keeping at the core the idea of flavours and innovating it to make it a healthy offering, Flistaa penetrated the market with interesting new concoctions.

Breaking the trend

The packaged drink segment is mostly dominated by traditional flavours that are easy to make and sell. This was the idea that hit CA Harshvardhan Chhatbar, founder of, Flistaa and with a zeal to experiment with Indian flavours he entered the beverage market with his brand. He mentions that beverage as a category is a very hard nut to crack and is dominated by large players only. So, with a bevy of newer brands entering the market with their innovative products the category is getting disrupted and it is in turn creating a landscape of opportunity for brands like his.

From the idea to the launch, Harshvardhan and his team had to devote serious attention to R&D and craft that perfect formula for growth that could sit well with the customers. Flistaa as a brand has come up with the most famous Indian flavours like Ganga Jamuna juice mix, Alphonso mango milkshake mix, Anarkali Juice Mix, etc. which were not offered by any legacy player in the beverage segment. Also generally Instant premixes were considered sugar and preservative-laden products which they changed by using Natural Fruit Powders and Natural Milk powders to make their products.

Hitting it right

Despite being considered convenient, current Instant drink mixes normally come in bulk packing which was hard to store. This is the notion that Flistaa changed by bringing small serving formats along with providing shakers to make the beverages anytime-anywhere within 1 minute without any hassle. However, the route to the customer’s home was not so easy and Harshvardhan says that the Initial challenge was to make the youth identify with the brand and its flavours.

This is because the perception of instant premix was considered to be unhealthy at first instance because most of the premix brands were known to come loaded with sugar and preservatives only without any real ingredients.

“Hence, we took some more time in product R&D and made products from natural fruit powders without any added preservatives. Then the challenge was communicating that – which we did by more vibrant and natural packaging design and website design with all the claims given upfront. We have started with 2 offerings – Instant Juices and Instant milkshakes – In that, we have 6 different flavours Ganga Jamuna Saraswati juice mix, Anarkali Juice mix, Mango milkshake mix, etc. Now we are coming up with more unique Indian flavors like chikoo milkshake and sugarcane juice mix, etc. Also, we are expanding into new categories like tea, sodas, faluda, etc. with more variety of flavours,” he adds.

Launching through its own channel, the brand quickly diversified into other channels to connect better and quicker with the customers. However, Harshvardhan mentions that when counting sales numbers, Flistaa’s own website accounts for a bigger chunk of the total sales even if not major. “We regularly connect with our website consumers from across India to have a holistic view of the products and flavours. Further, we also regularly do some testing at local provision stores. By doing this, we stay in touch with our consumers regularly and can use their feedback to constantly upgrade ourselves,” Harshvardhan notes.

Eyeing for growth

The brand is bootstrapped at present, but Harshvardhan and his team are preparing to raise their first seed round to accelerate the brand’s expansion plans. Even though he says that the path to IPO is a long way ahead, they have plans for hyper-growth in the next 5 years by taking the brand worldwide. Flistaa looks to expand beyond India and create a market for itself in UAE, Africa, Canada, etc. They also plan to achieve Rs 100 crore revenue in the next 4-5 years.

Brownie points

  • Achieved 14x jump in monthly sales within 1 year of inception.
  • Sold over 2,00,000 servings within 1st year of launch.
  • Presence in over 10 cities in 7 states through offline distribution and Q commerce.
  • Listed on Amazon, Flipkart, and over 10 other major e-commerce stores.
  • Gross Margin – >60% (with low shipping costs)

First appeared in The India D2C Yearbook 2022

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