A chilly winter morning, a rainy afternoon, or a sultry summer evening, nothing can be as comforting as a hot cup of tea for us Indians. As ChaiPoint founder Amuleek Singh Bijral says, “India Runs on Chai. ” An MBA from the Harvard Business School, Amuleek’s Chai Point sells more than two lakhs cup of chai every day from its 100+ outlets across all India. Chai Point ensures quality and hygienic chai to its customer – the second most consumable beverage in the world.
Founded in 2010, Chai Point today is in all major Indian cities and in and around IT parks. The location is well thought of to cater to the premium consumers. Provide them a place to sit, relax, and enjoy a cup of hot tea to help them drain out their work pressures. Not only tea, but Chai Point’s elaborate menu also offers a variety of tea options, snacks, and quality milk-based cold beverages as well.
What triggered the idea of Chai Point
While the Harvard Grad could have joined any corporate at a handsome salary or open up a B2B centric (business-to-business) venture, he decided to become a chai wallah! The idea of starting Chai Point struck Amuleek post he came back to India.
He says, “I always wanted to become an entrepreneur in the consumer brands segment but hadn’t decided on what I will venture into. It was when I came back to India I realized finding a coffee shop was ten times easier than finding a quality chai point – the beverage Indians enjoy more”. And this is when he decided to open Chai Point, a better version of India’s nukkad chai stalls. To make better ambiance, quality tea, technology-driven orders, and catering to the premiere tea lovers.
Amuleek candidly mentions his family’s reaction when he told them about his ‘chai’ idea. “my mother said if you had to sell chai, why did you go to Harvard for an MBA?” His family supported him completely as they knew he would have done his research well before deciding on this venture.
While he had enough support and money to build Chai Point, he faced challenges in getting his junior staff. The customer-facing staff at the outlets and delivery guys didn’t want to be called chai wallahs. Connected to a brand that sells ‘just chai’ and not ‘beer or coffee’ wasn’t a pride for the young members. However, Amuleek didn’t give up, and he spent a lot of time and money in employee engagement activities.
Amuleek says, “The customer-facing members of any company need to be the one most convinced of why their company is doing what it is doing. If they are not convince, that uncertainty reflects on their behavior, and the customers can read their mind”.
Soon people from giants such as Starbucks, Pepsico, and Oberoi joined Chai Point, and it is approximately a 1000 people team now! He shares that when they just started and when customers walked up to the counters to just say “thanks,”. It was a great feeling, and he became sure with every ‘thanks to you’ being on the right path.
Chai Point’s Contribution – both to its Consumers and to the Environment
“With great power comes greater responsibilities.” Amuleek believes in this famous quote from the movie Spiderman. He ensured his business doesn’t harm the environment in any way. Hence, more than the 60+ delivery scooters he has are all-electric to avoid any pollution. The chai flask is of heat resistant bio-degradable disposable flasks.
Amuleek says, “We keep a constant check on our waste management to avoid affecting the environment in any way. I am glad people today prefer brands that are sensitive to the environment”.
Want to taste our modern chai wallah’s chai? Click here to place your order – chaipoint.com
Amuleek Singh plans to open up ChaiPoint outlets outside India in the near future. He says there is still time for it as India needs more chai to run, and there are many cities that are waiting for quality chai!
Read about the company which is helping brands become ‘chai pe charcha’ – Gupshup with CupShup