“We want to Become Rs 1000 Cr Brand in 4+ years,” Gaurav Pande of Popeyes
“We want to Become Rs 1000 Cr Brand in 4+ years,” Gaurav Pande of  Popeyes

In the bustling streets of Chandni Chowk, Delhi, a culinary revolution is underway as Popeyes, renowned for its delectable chicken offerings, sets its sights on monumental growth. Gaurav Pande, the driving force behind Popeyes India, recently made headlines with an audacious goal: to elevate the brand into a Rs 1000 crore powerhouse within four years. This ambitious aspiration, stemming from recent Popeyes news, signifies a remarkable journey ahead. By leveraging the irresistible appeal of Popeyes' signature chicken dishes and tapping into the vibrant essence of Chandni Chowk, Pande's vision promises to redefine the Indian dining experience. With innovation at its core and a strategic roadmap in place, Popeyes is poised to carve a significant presence in the dynamic culinary landscape of India.

Why did you choose Chandni Chowk as a location, What is the reason behind it?

It's interesting. We launched our outlet in Bangalore in 2022, followed by Chennai last year. Obviously, what we stand for in every part we go is flavors. We stand for Cajun flavors. We stand for the most authentic chicken that we serve.  So we are about culinary, and we are a lot about heritage. Our heritage comes from Louisiana, which is where we, the brand was born back in 1972. Now, Delhi is like a foodies delight. And then, you know, what better place to open from a culinary perspective than Chandani Chowk, and also from the fact that, you know, we are a brand that does a lot of work from heart. So, we serve food with our heart, we make food with our hearts, we test our food with our hearts, and this is like entering the heart of Delhi.

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What unique challenges did the brand face in adapting its menu and brand for the Indian market?

We’ve been lucky that way because the brand stands for Cajun flavors. Now, if I get into this detail of Cajun, you will realize that Cajun is basically a mix of spices. The spices at the core of it is celery, bell pepper, paprika, garlic, onions. All that we use as Indians in our homes and kitchens. So it is a very palatable and a known flavor for Indians, the Cajun flavors. And so we didn't have to do much to that extent. However, having said that, we test each and every flavor that we offer. So we brought in our authentic flavors from the global team. We tested them within. Most of them did very well. Okay. There was a little bit of change of salt nodes. We also, however, realize the need for there's a food is always very local, and consumers do need their local palette and they have their own local needs. Right.  We worked on two things. We have developed a set of range of products that are still developed in the same format, but are now suited to Indian palate. We have developed a range of vegetarian dishes, which are very specific to the Indian in India.

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How does the brand differentiate itself from existing fast food chains?

First of all, we are standing for very real authentic chicken. Yeah. So a lot of brands serve chicken. We serve very real authentic chicken. It is not frozen, first of all. They are sourced from local farms through our dedicated supply chain capability, moved to the store and used within the shelf life of the product. So they're never frozen. That gives a very different texture to the product. It makes it much more secure, much more juicier. So that's one thing which we differentiate on first of all. The second is in the process that we make, we are using real flavors. So these are not artificial flavors. When I say Cajun, you have in our product real spices.  And we just don't add on top of it.We marinate the products. We do it for 12 hours. So our 12 hr marination is the second USP, which we have. As a brand, we stand for bold flavors. That's what we've stood for.

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What are the long-term growth plans in Delhi or across India?

Delhi is very important part of our game plan, but we intend to be a thousand crore brand in four to five years time. So we have only to scale up faster and faster. So we have 32 stores now. Our plan is to keep adding stores at a very fast pace. We will expand nationally, we will expand in other regions as well. And you know, obviously there's a lot of execution that is, that needs to come, go right behind this. But our plans are very clear in that pace. We have got great feedback from customers and the products are really doing well, and we are confident that we can scale up fast.

So as of now, I'm looking forward to the launch in Omaxe chalk Mall in Chandni Chowk. And then quickly we'll be coming back with three more launches back to back that includes; Pacific Mall Jasola. NIT Faridabad and Gurgaon.

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