To get good, clean and reasonable food to eat when you’re away from home is a mammoth task. To find that food when you have the stress of work looming over your head makes matters worse. I’ve been surviving on sandwiches from Subway for the past few months to cut the hassle of looking for new avenues of quick food.
Food is fuel, and Mira Jhala, Co-founder of Curry in a Hurry couldn’t have described the situation a lot of us are in better when she said, “Food is fuel and it’s disheartening to see the high degree of unhealthy consumption taking place all around us.”
Curry in a Hurry is a Gurgaon-based retail and delivery service for home-style ready-to-eat Indian thalis. It was started by Mira and Meghna Jaswal, both graduates and friends from the Institute of Hotel Management, Aurangabad, with roughly 20 years of international experience between them. Curry in a Hurry is their second venture together; their first venture called, The Urban Kitchen, is a service providing on-premises freshly cooked food to large corporate offices.
Curry in a Hurry stemmed from the demand from smaller offices and individual orders; they have gained a lot of popularity and customer base in the last two years. “We put food quality and customer satisfaction at the heart of everything we do; from the sourcing of high quality ingredients, to nutrition locking cooking techniques,” explains Mira. The food comes packed in re-heatable and spill-proof packaging and the menu is planned according to local and seasonal ingredients.
The duo handles over 250 orders in a day; they currently only operate in a small part of Gurgaon, but they do have plans of expanding into the rest of NCR soon. “The idea behind Curry in a Hurry is to simplify the lunch experience and offer a quality balanced lunch option which does not hurt the wallet,” says Mira. “We follow a methodical and process-driven approach which translates into consistency and accommodates scale. The secret of retaining customers and building on customer loyalty is consistency and staying true to the value proposition being offered,” she reveals. Curry in a Hurry competes against most of the Quick Service Restaurants in the area. However, their competency lies in the fact that they offer more variety; their food is cooked fresh daily and is affordable.
“We have an active ‘giving back to the community’ program under which we use leftover food to feed the less privileged from the local community every day,” informs Mira. Mira and Meghna ran an extensive pilot program in a clearly demarcated geographical area to help them fine tune the product and streamline the internal processes. “We have delivered a consistent experience, which naturally led to strong word-of-mouth. We are proud to say that we have 100% repeat business!” claims Mira.
According to Mira, the biggest challenge they’ve faced is getting and retaining skilled and qualified labor. “Human resource management in a skill that is highly crucial in this industry. We’ve tackled the issue by creating an environment of respect and discipline,” states Mira. The young firm will be soon have a dedicated online ordering system/app. The duo has made every decision with the intent of scaling the business in terms of geography and numbers.
“We have also been approached by leading private equity and venture capital firms who have shown great interest in our work,” signs off Mira.
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This story is a part of the ‘F&B Entrepreneurs’ series presented in association with ‘Chilli Paneer – A DBS Production'.