It is common for successful businessmen to teach a trick or two about starting a business, which are often a part of their memoirs. But to teach your own business and urge people to start a venture like yours while you are running one, needs a man cut from a different cloth. Pallavi speaks to Kiran Biligiri to know more.
Pallavi: You are making a silent revolution in the food business space. Before we talk about that, tell us more about yourself.
Kiran Biligiri: I am a first-generation entrepreneur. Soon after graduating in Hotel Management and a short stint with Taj Group of Hotels, I started off on my own in the unconventional pest control business and ran it successfully for many years. It was later acquired by an MNC for a million plus dollars. Parallelly, I also started a fine-dining vegetarian restaurant, Utsav in Hyderabad. Utsav won the hearts of customers quickly and became an iconic brand, winning many top awards. Later, I started an exclusive banqueting brand called Moksh and catering service for large, prestigious events like IPL.
Pallavi: Restaurants are a big victim of the pandemic. How did you face it?
Kiran Biligiri: Yes, it was a tough phase indeed. Optimizing resources and processes played a key role. Thankfully, seeing the trend towards online ordering, I had begun my cloud kitchen foray with Swiggy and Zomato long before Covid. The training and experience my team had in this new model has helped us sail through the waves.
Pallavi: Now, tell us about the big story - the Cloud Kitchen Masterclass.
Kiran Biligiri: I believe that the more you want to keep for yourself, the less you get to keep. Homemakers are such awesome cooks. Why can't they emerge from the shadows of the kitchen and have their own food business? Many working professionals want to do something on their own one day. Why can't it be today and in the evergreen food business?
I felt that a structured training would give them necessary clarity and confidence to take that big leap of faith. Through my Masterclass, I demystify the food business by sharing my knowledge and experience in all the facets - kitchen setup, manpower needs, cuisine choice, location, costing, pricing, delivery platforms.
Pallavi: How is your Masterclass different?
Kiran Biligiri: More than being different, I consider being relevant most important. I carry the experience, so only I teach. We have a well-managed online students’ community where we guide, share and promote our member entrepreneurs. My aim is not to complete batches but to help my students find their feet in food business. Whatever it takes!
Pallavi: That's great! At ground level, what has been the impact of Masterclass till now?
Kiran Biligiri: 800 new entrepreneurs and counting! This is about 13% of my student members, who are also very new to business. From across the country. All within a couple of months of being trained in the food business.
Pallavi: How does it feel to you as a mentor?
Kiran Biligiri: Very humbling and satisfying. By equipping them with the requisite knowledge, I have been able to take out their fear and inertia. In fact, what is most rewarding is the creation of the largest, thriving pan-India community, who are networking, learning, sharing and helping each other grow. As a fellow entrepreneur,
it is perhaps my turn now to look for new ideas from them.
Know more https://www.kiranbiligiri.com/