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5 homegrown labels in the F&B space that you need to look out for

India is undoubtedly riding high on the wave of entrepreneurship. By the time you finish reading this blog, the number of individuals vying to build something they can call their "own" will probably be higher by a few. The lockdown of 2020 was a catalyst of sorts and we witnessed a massive spike in the number of people starting their own businesses, and in turn their own entrepreneurial journeys. Some became TikTokers and professional Instagram Influencers, some became activists for a cause, but most hopped onto the banana bread bandwagon and ate it with some Dalgona coffee.

The F&B industry on the whole isn’t adrift from this said wave, and it has kindled a passion and knack to work a kitchen  opportunity to start their home baking / cooking journey. It also gave a huge impetus to those who had recently established their commercial kitchens.

Many of Thrive Now’s partners are those who’ve established their homegrown labels and have gone on to find themselves an unprecedented and loyal audience. They’ve not only built their labels but have transformed them into ‘brands’ via social media and word of mouth; supported of course by Thrive Now to set up their own direct ordering infrastructure and hence scale seamlessly while they focussed on what they did best.

The best part? By strengthening their direct ordering channels, their growth was either independent or had minimal dependence on aggregators. How? Thanks to the improved margins, owned customer data and marketing tools to retain and gratify customers!

Here are 5 homegrown labels that are trailblazing their way to fame in the F&B industry:

K’z Mezze - Spearheaded by Kriti Jham and her daughters, this Lebanese home kitchen brings the flavours of the Middle East to Mumbai. Launched in 2021, the brand has steadily earned the role of a fan favourite with their ready to eat, delish hummus coming in a variety of flavours. Their dips reach consumers neatly packed and with a drizzle of olive oil as dressing. Special shoutout to their dark chocolate tahini tart - the perfect way to end your meal.

Mama Z - Pioneering in the space with one of the most indulgent chocolate cakes, maybe EVER. The statement chocolate ganache is what makes their cakes so different from the rest. It’s not just cakes though, they have so many interesting items on their menu that are must-tries. Mama Z, headed by Zarine, began their journey in 2016, and have been on an upward trajectory ever since.

Toast Doughnut Shop - A nascent cafe, incepted by Devika Manjrekar, Toast Doughnuts has won the hearts of Mumbaikars for sure but has also caught the eye of people all over the country. Their statement cream-filled bombilinis and crispy doughnuts are what initially attracted their audience, but with an expanded menu, and new projects coming up, they’re gaining popularity on all fronts.

Little Food Daily - A home-delivery kitchen, started by Bhakti Mehta, Little Food Daily has compact, easy to eat meals, and extravagant, over the top spreads with ingredients that make our heart (stomach?) sing. The thing that defines Little Food Daily, is that they don’t stick to a single cuisine, consistently experimenting with ingredients, and different cultures.

Tier Nom Patisserie - Popular for their OTT cake decor, Tier Nom is about intermingling art and desserts and making them deliciously indulgent. Vahishta Zandbaf, founder of Tier Nom is known for her extravagant customisations and intricate details. Constantly staying up to date with various trends making rounds on social media, she dabbles in new techniques for her work to stay relevant and exciting for her consumers.

Inspired? We sure are! There are ways one can navigate through their careers while building an entity of their own as well. All you need is a dollop of determination served with a spoonful of discipline. If you’re looking to expand your career options and choices, and have a knack for the F&B space, start today - and of course ensure you accept the norm of direct ordering for your business too. You can always take assistance from leaders in the space, by way of reading up on their journeys for inspiration, and techniques too.

Marketing and word of mouth will be the holy grail for your business if you’re starting it from your home base. It’s all about how and what you communicate to your customers. With Thrive Now, restaurant partners get access to a holistic marketing suite which can be used to leverage collected customer data, and tailor targeted campaigns for an end consumer. Once you’ve got the tone of your brand set (and some delish food of course), customer acquisition and more importantly retention eases out.

So if you’re in this space (or any other for that matter), aching to be a part of something that you can call your own, now’s the time to take that leap of faith and begin your entrepreneurial journey. And it goes without saying, we’ll help you Thrive!

Aaliya Panju

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