These Delhi brothers started 3 restaurants in the same building, now make Rs 10Cr turnover

In 2019, the Sarin brothers — Shaan, Rahul, and Aakash — took up a three-storey building in Punjabi Bagh, Delhi, and launched three restaurants — one on each floor. The three restaurants, which share a kitchen, are named TEO Lounge and Bar, The Dineroom, and Cartoony Planet.
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The Sarin brothers — born into a family of businessmen — wanted to start a restaurant business that targeted children, young adults, and families. But they knew a restaurant for kids cannot serve alcohol, and a lounge-cum-bar for young adults wouldn’t attract families.

To overcome this, Shaan (34), Rahul (32), and Aakash (29) in 2019 took up a three-storey building in Punjabi Bagh, Delhi, and launched three restaurants — one on each floor.

The three restaurants, which share a kitchen, are named TEO Lounge and Bar, The Dineroom, and Cartoony Planet.

According to the brothers, TEO Lounge and Bar is a Rs 5 crore turnover business, The Dineroom records Rs 3 crore turnover, and Cartoony Planet makes Rs 2 crore in annual revenue.

A look inside the three restaurants

Shaan Sarin, the founder of the 25-employee TEO Lounge and Bar, says, “TEO is targeting people who like to party and dance, especially couples, college students, and working professionals.”

“While opening TEO, we knew there was a lot of competition and lounges in Punjabi Bagh. In order to be unique, we built a space that has the longest bar and the biggest lounging space, as well as a rooftop,” he adds.

TEO’s pricing for two people is Rs 2,200, including alcohol.

TEO Lounge and Bar

Cartoony Planet — founded by Rahul Sarin — took the brothers a year to envision. Being a parent, Rahul wanted to create a space his kids would love to spend their time. When he launched Cartoony Planet, he included an indoor soft play area with slides, tunnels, climbers, etc.

“With Cartoony Planet, we target kids and their parents as we have a dedicated area for kids to play while parents eat from the restaurant. After all the activities, the kids also grab a snack from the restaurant, and this makes it a wholesome experience,” Rahul explains.

Cartoony Planet’s pricing for two people is Rs 1,200, and it is run by a team of eight.

With a workforce of 20 working at The Dineroom, the brothers’ focus is on customers who enjoy fine dining. “There is an inadequacy of good places to lounge and dine with friends and family in Delhi. So, we target Gen X and Gen Y — to be precise, people who want a proper dine-in experience with family or friends,” says Aakash, Founder of The Dineroom.

The Dineroom’s pricing for two people is Rs 1,400, including alcohol.

So far, the trio of brothers has invested Rs 5 crore in the entire project of running three restaurants.

The Dineroom

COVID-19 impact and future plans

When the COVID-19 induced lockdown was implemented, about 90 percent of restaurants under the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI)’s ambit downed their shutters. RedSeer Consultingrevealed that as of mid-June, India’s overall $65 billion foodservice market was working at 10 percent of its size.

The huge drop in business faced by the brothers made 2020 a roller-coaster year. In the second half of the year, online orders helped in partially recovering their losses.

“These days, online ordering is a lifeline for restaurants, and it's hard to deny its benefits and how it has helped restaurants recover,” Shaan says.

However, the brothers believe online ordering cannot beat the dining experience at a restaurant. With the lockdown lifted and their business recovering, they have separated the tables at their restaurants and put safety and hygiene measures in place.

“The road to recovery is long. Without any support from the government in the form of stimulus packages, our industry is trying to find its feet and take initial steps towards recovery. We would like to urge everyone to support hoteliers in these unprecedented times. We believe it's completely safe to eat outside,” says Rahul.

Despite the setback in 2020, the brothers remain obsessed with their business ideas and restaurant ventures. In fact, they are looking to expand. “We are planning to open two more branches in a year or so,” says Aakash.

Edited by Suman Singh