Straw & Spoon : Interview with Archita Tiwari
Hi! I am Archita. I grew up in Bihar, did my graduation and Chartered Accountancy in Delhi, worked there for few years before I got hitched and came to this beautiful city of Bangalore 5 years ago. I stay in Whitefield with my loving husband Nitish and apple of our eye, our three year old daughter Dhun.
What made me choose food outlet business
During my decade old experience of working in Corporate sector, I stayed/travelled in/to various cities and always felt the need of a good eating joint where one can eat without compromising on wallet, calories, freshness and most importantly taste. And this is when I started doing my research and discovered that I was not alone! I also could see that Healthy food is not difficult to find, it is available in abundance around us in the form of fruits and vegetables. However, planning, procurement and preparation are some of the hassles along with certain myths prevalent in India around healthy eating.
I felt a need of addressing this gap and started creating a business model with Nitish, and the next thing was action on the ground that included finding a suitable place, getting staff & training them, working on marketing ideas, finalizing the menu, and scores of other operational and tactical things that are required in setting up a business.
After about 4 months of intense planning, I opened the first outlet of ‘Straw & Spoon’ in September 2014 at Brigade Metropolis Bangalore and the journey so far has been nothing short of exciting. Customers have really warmed up to this novel idea of eating/drinking something healthy and helped me improve upon few things with their ideas and suggestions. It’s heartening to see that more than 70% of footfalls are repeat customers and that’s a testimony to the things going right about the place.
We at ‘Straw & Spoon’ believe that Eating healthy does not mean low on calories or a compromise on taste, it means intake of all the sufficient nutrients being cooked/processed properly. A lot of research and detailing goes in finalizing a recipe and each offering is a work of art. Right from juices to sandwiches, salads, soups, savouries and even desserts, everything is prepared from fresh fruits and vegetables and there is no mayo or processed cheese in any of our offerings.
My motivation to become entrepreneur
Although I have taken up many initiatives during my corporate career to get a tag of intrapreneur, I must admit that Entrepreneurship has happened only because of my firm belief in this idea and my family’s unflinching support. It has come as an acquired taste, and I am enjoying every sip of it!
‘Straw & Spoon’ is a healthy food outlet and caters to a mix of corporate and residential customers. A squeakily clean place, good variety of healthy drinks and eatables, and ease on wallet has been attracting almost all categories of customers so far.
We procure fresh fruits and vegetables on a daily basis, process/clean those depending on the recipes, and serve to our customers from 8 AM to 10 PM every day because healthy eating shouldn’t take a break! It’s a simple B2C model. We plan to open more outlets in the next few months, and are working on corporate tie-ups as well. We are focusing on expanding in Bangalore market for the next 12-18 months before planning to go pan-India.