Kolkata, with its artistic people, laid back lifestyle, and love for food has it’s own food startup – Meratiffin. Starting its operations in July of 2015 and now operating out of Nasscom warehouse in Kolkata, Meratiffin is a home-chef discovery and engagement platform.
Vinay Menon, the co-founder of Meratiffin, believes in giving ownership and ownership is something displayed by the employees and the home-chefs that work with Meratiffin. Meratiffin ties up with home-chefs and restaurants and trains them, when needed, in hygiene and food-safety, packaging and helps them optimize their food-production. Home-chefs are given complete freedom to choose the number of dishes they want to prepare and dedicate to Meratiffin while also choosing the delivery radius. Vinay says that giving ownership empowers people and so he makes sure that every home-chef operates like a micro-enterprise by making, selling (through Meratiffin), delivering, and facing the consumer during delivery. This helps the home-chefs create some personal branding. Vinay says, “Those who run a kitchen always have some help, which these home-chefs can use and do the deliveries efficiently. In my experience I have seen them wanting to do the deliveries themselves.”
While the venture is not seeking funding at the moment, it is developing a large stack of home chefs. Currently there are about 80 home-chefs and restaurants in Kolkata that MeraTiffin has tied up with. It has expanded to Siliguri via a strategic tie up. It plans to tap into the markets of tier 2 and tier 3 cities. It is looking at cities like Durgapur, Asansol, Dhanbad, Patna, and Ranchi as its next pit stops. It also plans vertical expansion by bringing people closer to their local sweet/snack shop via its app.
Meratiffin was recently featured on Egiye Bangla. For those of you who don’t know what is Egiye Bangla, I’ll tell you my understanding of it. It is a Bengali show inspired by Shark Tank, with lot of Indian TV show special effects and Bengali music that features entrepreneurs pitching their ideas to a panel of judges.
MeraTiffin is still in a very nascent stage but so is the Indian food tech space however turbulent the space may be. Vinay says that consolidation is bound to happen in the next 5 years. Whatever happens in the next 5 years, both the common man and the enterprising home-chef shall benefit.
About Vinay Menon:
Vinay has a background in adverting and sales. After facing the heat of sub-prime crisis back in 2008, Vinay resolved to take things in his own hands and started a web-development company. Later he saw there was a problem to be solved and started Mera-tiffin. Meet Vinay on Linkedin
About Priyanka Bajaj:
Priyanka is a recent commerce graduate from Calcutta University. She had worked with Vinay in his parent venture. Such was the competency and leadership displayed by her that there was no other choice for a co-founder when Vinay wanted to start MeraTiffin. She smiles and says, “Mai Jo Bolti Wahi hota tha”. She has been responsible for the designing of MeraTiffin’s app interface and user flow. Meet Priyanka on Linkedin