Indian Restaurant Congress 2019 was held in Mumbai at Hotel Sahara Star on 13th June. It was a sagacious summit, where food industry experts and leaders shared their radical views on the ecosystem today and in the near future. The objective of the summit was to make a difference to the West Indian Restaurant Sector, whether it’s a small restaurant chain or an international chain entering India or perhaps brand on the anvil of disruptive growth by creating the way forward to the change we are all experiencing in the industry today.
Indian Restaurant Congress 2019
The day-long conference was an enlightening experience where the extremely experienced culinary brigade shared their core strengthening ideas, hands-on approach of the gastronomical world. MS. Ritu Marya editor-in-Chief, Franchise India started the event with her welcome note, sharing her vision about the future of the culinary industry.
The lighting of the lamp and inaugurations ceremony was done by Mr Anjan Chatterjee (Founder & MD, speciality Group of Restaurants). Today he is running 120 outlets in over 27 cities in India and abroad. I personally liked his approach, where he talked about the insights of a professional kitchen, the Indian taste-buds, the honesty in the comfort food and the sustainability in the food industry. He calls it Uberisation of the business.
After a network tea break Mr. Chetan Arora (DA and Multi-Unit Owner- Subway India), Mr. Vishal Kamat (CEO, Kamat Group of Hotels), Mr. Sahil Jain(Co-founder, Dineout), Mr. Ankit Gupta (Co-founder, director, Burma Burma) had a very interesting panel discussion on the topic Brand Evolution: How to keep Core Brand Fresh and Relevant for 2019 and beyond. How the business in India demands sustainable growth and operational mastering was discussed.
Once you get into the marathon of the food restaurant business, capital Intelligence is needed and is important to survive. The right money and finding the right concepts to Delight, Deliver and Develop was discussed in a very intellectual conversation with Mr. Sharad Sachdev (Director of Operation, L Catterton Asia) , Mr. Manoj Balan (Director of Finance , Gaja Capital), Ms. Nandini Mansinghka (CEO & MD, Mumbai Angel Network), Mr. Hariharan Premkumar (VP,DSG Consumer Partner). The session was moderated by Mr Animesh Damani (Artha Group of Companies)
Good for growth was the next topic of the panel discussion, Where the ideas and industry tricks on unlocking the real potential of the gastronomical business were highlighted. Hitesh Keswani (founder and director , Silver Beach), Karan Panna (Yellow-Tie Hospitality) , Rachel Goenka (CEO ,The Chocolate Spoon Company), Reynold Fernandes (Foodlink Services India), Tanmay Kumar(CFO Burger King India) , Varun Verma (Lightbox Ventures), Sumant Vikas (Corporate chef, Cremica Food Industry)
This was followed by a fantastic lunch and networking break. After that topic like Delivering the right experience at the table, Delivering Economics in the future of food service was held in another panel discussion. The dine out scenario in India has seen a considerable shift and the food service sector by itself has become a home ground for innovative menus, experiential hangouts but at the same time, the business of restaurant calls for sustainable growth and operational mastering the art of running a single outlet or a chain of restaurants.
How Robotics is coming into Food Operations Mr Gaurav Dewan (CEO, Travel Food Service) gave a real sense to the topic in his conversation.
The Western nightlife requires good food availability and has become a more informal treat to the millennials. Mr Gaurav Gidwani (F&B Director, Corum Hospitality)Shradha Bhansali (Candy and Green), Prahalad Sukhtankar (Black Sheep Bistro), Joy Singh(founder, rest and partner- Yeti HKV, EIPosto and Back to Basics) was a panel discussion, that gave a new insight to the minds of people, coming into the industry.
The Future of Food Industry Roundtable, the ways to right marketing strategies, restaurant development was discussed post which a Resturant Awards 2019 West India Edition was announced.