Cold Brewed Success: The Remarkable Journey of Theka Coffee

From selling popular street food in Ahmedabad to founding and scaling up one of India’s fastest growing and innovative, “cold brewed ready to drink coffee brand “the journey of Bhupinder Madaan, co-founder Abhishek Acharya and Business Development Head Animesh Khare has been quite astonishing, to say the least.

In 2017 giving up his successful street food venture, Bhupinder plunged full time into studying the food and beverage industry. On a visit to Delhi he happened to step into a bar and inspiration struck him. He hit upon the idea of selling chilled coffee in a beer bottle! And in September 2017 the first batch was rolled out under the brand name Theka Coffee!

Brand Learning Be unconventional, buck the trend with innovation and don’t follow or copy success stories.  Bhupinder himself is a firm believer of ‘No Method Entrepreneurship’. Focusing on creativity, quirk, innovation and flexibility helped the brand spot and create a unique positioning and consumption touch point.

The swag was cool and the contents were even cooler. This trendy positioning and hip packaging was an instant hit, especially among millennials, who resonated with the brand instantly. Imagine names like PALANGTOD coffee – Strong coffee made out of dark roast coffee beans. NEXT LEVEL: coffee – not too dark but not too mild also. COFFEE KI JAWANI – Made out of light roast coffee.

Brand LearningTheka Coffee has immense self-belief in its ideas and dares to be different and stand out in the market with both its product offerings and its business model.

Over the next two and a half years, Bhupinder opened 14 cafes through a franchise model. However then came the pandemic and the outlets had to be shut down. But post the first wave, Bhupinder was back in the game, setting up carts at 4 different locations in Ahmedabad to market the coffee.

In January 2022 came that game changing moment in the brand’s growth trajectory. They got invited to pitch for funding in Shark Tank. Theka Coffee pitched for a valuation of 5 crores and although the pitch got the prestigious panel really excited, they could not close a deal. But soon after the Shark Tank episode was aired, Theka’s sales skyrocketed.   And the team now had to start answering more than a 1000 calls a day from prospective franchisees.

Zenith Multi Trading a noted VC firm backed it and after that came a slew of deals which sky rocketed the brand’s valuation to 100 crores. Retail giant Reliance too approached Theka Coffee with lucrative offers.

Brand LearningCelebrate failures and treat them as milestones. They are but the stepping stones to bigger and better things on the road ahead.

From a tiny office to a fully-fledged headquarter in Ahmedabad and franchisees in 40+ cities, Theka Coffee has brewed quite a success story. It has clocked revenues of INR 16 crore in the last financial year. And has set itself an ambitious goal for attaining a turnover of 100 crores in the near future.

Brand LearningComing up from the grass root level helps stay in touch with ground realities and keep a finger on the customer pulse. It helps everyone stay grounded and responsive to the market moods. Staying humble is what helps in the long run.

Not to be missed is the brand mascot Gabru who is an integral part of Theka Coffee’s brand value, representing the teams’ commitment to the brand’s fun, playful, and positive vibe.

Brand LearningThe brand is a passion project and everyone connects with the happy, positive vibes, playfulness and the cool quotient the brand represents.

Altering the coffee serving business landscape with a fresh mindset

Knowing that the brand is now generating a strong pull from customers and keen investors, the strategic blue print is to maintain that affordable price point across key markets in India, and then roll out globally. The brand wants to be a disruptor in the true sense in the way it operates in the market.

Another key point the brand is addressing is the franchising model in India, where very often franchisees struggle to recoup their investments and often end up making marginal profits or slowly shut down. THEKA COFFEE is offering a franchisee model which is franchisee centric. It also offers a time tested road map plus SOPs that can help set up, maintain and sustain a franchisee over an extended period of time efficiently.

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