Raghav Verma, Nitin Saluja,co-founders, Chaayos
While coffee chains dot the length and breadth of the country, tea cafes are few and far between—an anomaly in a country of chai drinkers. That was the premise with which IIT alumni Verma and Saluja founded Chaayos in 2012. The chain, which operates in the Delhi-NCR region, Mumbai and Bengaluru, has raised about $41 million so far. Of that, $21.5 million came in February 2020 from inves - tors including U.S.-based Think Investments, Elevation Capital, and Tiger Global. The pandemic has forced Chaayos to double down on its omnichannel model.