Former Reliance BigFlix COO Pankaj Chandra, along with Tarun Khanna, former AVP of Planet M Retail, and Vikram Khanna, entrepreneur and restaurateur (they are not related), have recently launched Foodesto â€“ an e-commerce portal offering gourmet food and kitchen accessories.
Just a month-and-a-half old, Foodesto is run by Mumbai-based KeenBean Retail Pvt Ltd and looks to grab the attention of the urban population keen on gourmet food but don't have too many options to source it. Currently operating in Mumbai alone, Foodesto offers a variety of products such as cold cuts, gluten-free and special food, and organic food produced in India, as well as global brands for jams, bakery items and packaged food. The company also deals in gift hampers and kitchen accessories like table ware. Foodesto enables multi-channel buying â€“ one can order online (it has a mobile-compatible site) or even via phone.
Talking exclusively to Techcircle.in, co-founder Chandra said, "This segment offers an opportunity since such gourmet products are not easily available. It is still early for us, but we have seen good response. Moreover, in this space, you can expect repeat buying. Once a customer likes your product, he/she will come back because it is available here. We are already seeing 25-30 per cent repeat purchase."
Foodesto manages an inventory that includes items like Indian organic food and ready-to-eat items which move faster. For cold cuts, the company has a tie-up with a Deli (Delicatessen) and sources as per orders. It, however, manages the last-mile delivery for all items.
According to Chandra, Foodesto will soon expand to other cities. "For packaged food, we already ship to other cities as and when we get orders. But for cold cuts and bakery items, we need to have tie-ups in the cities. Delhi and Bangalore look like potential markets as of now and we would be venturing there soon," he added.
Creating a niche market for gourmet food may not be an easy task, though. However, looking to connect with the urban population keen on such food items is the USP of Foodesto and the product listing featured on the site looks suitably tempting. Plus, it offers food storage instructions â€“ extremely convenient for foodies looking for a treat at home. Would you try it out next time you want to savour something different?
(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)