What started as a business with one small shop in the Fort area, in Mumbai, run by two Italian brothers, has now become one of the biggest franchise opportunities of its kind in India and a staple amongst Indian customers. Monginis, in the early days, quickly became a favorite with the Europeans in Mumbai. No birthday, anniversary, wedding, or simple tea-time seemed to be complete without the cake or pastry from Monginis on their table. Monginis gradually became the favorite for all occasions, big and small. The company became known for its baked to perfection cakes, pastries, savories and much more.
In the 1960s, the small shop and the brand were bought over by the Khorakiwala family, who turned it into their legacy. By 1971, the idea of having a nationwide franchise network to reach out to customers in their neighborhoods was born. During this time, franchising was unheard of and with Huseini T. Khorakiwala’s vision, Monginis wanted to make sure that it was done the right way. “We felt that partnering with people who knew their neighborhoods and communities would allow us to further our goal of being a part of their celebrations and memories,” shares Qusai Khorakiwala, Director, Monginis Foods Pvt Ltd.
Starting the franchising way back in 1971, today Monginis has 680+ cake shops pan India. Talking about keeping the relationship intact with franchisees, Khorakiwala shares, “We constantly conduct training programme for our franchisees throughout the year.”
Today, Monginis has cake shop franchisees ranging from 40-year-old to 30 years to 20 years to 10 years and 5 years as well. Some of them are as new as six-month-old. “We have a very low attrition rate of less than one per cent business closing down due to various reasons,” informs Khorakiwala.
Its partners range from hard-core retailers with experiences from generations. Talking about franchisees coming from different walks of life, Khorawala informs, “Our manufacturing franchisee from Pune is an architect by profession. A doctor by profession manages our unit in Aurangabad and a practicing lawyer in Pune.” The company’s emphasis over the next few years will be on implementing its expansion plan through geographic and sales growth. On what initiatives it does to help a franchisee succeed, Khorakoiwala shares, “If a store is faltering and experiencing low traffic, we try to support it with the help of customer engagement activities such as offering free customized mugs, tattoo painting activities for children, our ‘Be a Baker’ program and much more.”
(This article was first published in the January issue of Entrepreneur Magazine. To subscribe, click here)