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Bala Sarda, 

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IN 2015, as a 23-year-old fourth generation entrepreneur in bulk tea business, Bala Sarda set a lofty goal for himself—building a brand to spread the aroma of India’s finest teas across the world. He was unhappy that ill-organised domestic traders were selling to global brands at low margins even as a player like Twinings of London was selling more Darjeeling tea than any Indian brand.
In last seven years, Vahdam India—reverse anagram of the name of Sarda’s father—has developed a model to procure tea from over 150 renowned plantations in Darjeeling, Assam, Kangra, Nilgiri and Sikkim. The tea is processed at its facility in Noida and exported to 130 countries. It is also sold through its website. “I realised early that the internet can democratise brand building. You don’t need to be in America to sell to the Americans,” Sarda says, pointing out that while Tea Board’s average export price is $4 per kg, Vahdam’s average selling price is $80 per kg. “That is $76 of value being retained in India,” he says.
Vahdam India has ₹200 crore-plus net revenue, making it one of the largest premium wellness brands in India. It plans to touch ₹500 crore in next three years. The plan is to add spices and go deeper in existing markets. “We have almost two lakh square feet of warehousing space in U.S., U.K., Germany, U.A.E. and India. Our focus will be on distribution in next two-three years,” says Sarda.