PappaRoti to open 6 more outlets in Chennai by year-end: Co-founders

Kunal Jethwani, Suraj Bahirwani, Nitin Jethwani

Chennai: Little would have the founders of PappaRoti thought that people would fall so much for freshly baked buns. But 16 years down the line, the Malaysian brand is growing unprecedentedly than ever before.

The buns come with different combinations that entice people into coming back for more. News Today had an interaction with Suraj Bahirwani and Nitin Jethwani, co-founders of PappaRoti India who ventured into the F&B industry with a firm named NK Hospitality.

Excerpts from the interview:

Q: How significant is India as a market for PappaRoti?
A: India is a very important market for most brands, more so for PappaRoti as the concept of ‘Bun and Chai’ is Indian by heart. India is an emerging market and the food business is growing over 20 per cent annually, so PappaRoti would like to grow its stakes in India.

Q: The buns are world famous. How do you think it will work out in India that is as diverse as any country would come?
A: Well our quality of buns speak for themselves. That is the reason they are world famous. The buns are exported from Malaysia to every store in the world, so quality is top notch. We are confident about our product and good food attracts all, diversity is not a problem.

Q: Will the showrooms be opened in top metros and cities alone or would the firm knock the doors of tier 2 and tier 3 cities as well?
A: As of now we concentrating on the metros, hopefully 2020-21 will see us moving to tier 2 and tier 3 cities.

Q: With the segment crowded with many players, both indigenous and foreign, what should a newcomer do to cement their place in India?
A: The most important thing for anyone in the F&B industry is the quality of the food and our buns, coffees and food speak for themselves, also we are different, we the first players to get a fancy bun concept into India.

Q: Innovation is the key to staying atop the chain. What does PappaRoti have in its kitty in this regard?
A: The buns will always be the same. So, our idea is to play around with different types of toppings like nutella hazlenut, dark chocolate, maple syrup, strawberry and even cheese. Unlike other cafe’s we have a keen eye on food along with the buns and coffee.

Q: With more than 400 outlets all over the globe, could you tell India- and Chennai-specific plans for the firm?
A: NK Hospitality is the master franshisee of the brand PappaRoti in South West India. Currently we have two stores in Mumbai, one in Hyderabad and our another store was just opened in Chennai. Our store in Pune will be opening next month, two (more) stores are in the pipeline in Bangaluru and we should start work on our new store in Chennai by next month. Our idea is to have about five to six stores in Chennai before the end of the year.

Q: Could you elaborate the future products that the firm will be putting on sale?
A: Our main product, coming all the way from Malaysia, will always be our buns. We are concentrating a lot on food, specially on thin crust pizzas with the best quality raw material and farm fresh vegetables for our customers to get the flavor of Italy.

Expansion plans
“We are quite new to the Indian market. So it’s tough to gauge the market share, but our expansion plans are big. (We will open shops at) Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Bangaluru, Kochi and slowly into tier 2 and tier 3 cities. We plan to have around 12 stores by the end of the year and about 25 by the end of 2020,” said the co-founders about Indian market expansion.

Praveen Kumar S