Every now and then, a company emerges out of the blue and turns a market on its head. These are brands that are able to connect the dots and see the big picture. They are able to spot early on vital trends that are likely to play out in the future. They have a knack of presaging consumer habits and solving the pain points. They have the foresight to explore the fault lines and conflicts shaping their industries.

These brands focus on strategic expansion beyond traditional boundaries. They innovate by taking new approaches to the customer experience.

These are the Disruptors.

CNBC-TV18 and CNBCTV18.com are launching a TV and web series that will tell you the exciting stories of young achievers who have created innovative brands and disrupted the market to become genuine game changers in India. Disruptors is a collection of brands that have used new technology, smart strategies or pure business acumen to change the way we live today. They have carved a niche within an existing category or created a new one of their own.

Each episode will feature one such successful company and the individuals behind it. The list will contain plenty of untold tales, the victories—small and big—of the founders, and behind-the-scenes accounts of their incredible journey. Join us for great conversations on brand strategy, business growth and building customers. Disruptors will decode the secrets and what it takes to become a market leader.

healthy
bites

Shyam Bagri and
Aditya Bagri
Founder & Director, Bagrry’s
Muesli and oats are among the top health foods that are dominating the market today. But one homegrown company had the foresight to pioneer the creation of these products in India back in the 1990s; long before the Internet revolution—Bagrry’s. The Bagrry’s group is one of India’s leading suppliers of cereal-based products with a lineage of over 50 years in food processing. Standing strong at a current revenue of Rs 180 crores, they not only disrupted the market to stand tall alongside competitors such as Kellogg’s, but they also created a niche for themselves with their philosophy of honest health and nutrition.

Their story began with one plant in Delhi back in 1979 where they started out by using just spare products of their family’s other flour mills. Soon, their B2B division was supplying raw materials to companies such as Nestle, GlaxoSmithKline and Britannia. They then diversified into a B2C business launching their range of cereals, muesli and oats. Going from just Rs 2 crore in revenue in 2000 into a Rs 180-crore brand by 2018 is proof of the brand’s successful evolution. It’s now present in 70,000 retail outlets in India, in addition to e-commerce platforms widening its consumer base by breaking geographical barriers. And still, their story is just beginning.

They are always working on bringing alive their vision to provide innovative products which can cater to modern nutritional needs.
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health
Drinks

Anuj Rakyan
Founder and Managing Director, RAW Pressery
With the goal to address the scarcity of honest and transparent products in India, Anuj Rakyan created India’s first and largest clean label company, RAW Pressery (a part of Rakyan Beverages). Growing up as an athlete, Anuj understood the importance of eating healthy and maintaining an active lifestyle. His keen interest in health and fitness paired with his understanding of the space led him to launch India’s first truly healthy brand of cold-pressed juices.

A graduate from Duke University, North Carolina, Anuj began his career as an investment banker at Morgan Stanley. He then moved to the world of brand consulting at FutureBrand, New York. Before embarking on his entrepreneurial journey, Anuj spent the past decade building operations and helping brands in the diamond jewelry industry, having worked with brands such as Gitanjali Gems.

Under Anuj’s aegis, RAW Pressery also develops, manufactures and distributes the complete product range through general trade, modem trade, e-commerce and home delivery. His broader vision is to make a healthy lifestyle easily accessible to everyone by making clean-label food and beverage products available, accessible and affordable.

Accessories

Dilip Kapur
Founder, Hidesign
A business that was built out of a leather-crafting hobby in the late 1970s, Dilip Kapur began making leather goods under the name Hidesign with just one worker in his workshop in Puducherry.

Hidesign not only understood leather well but also stuck to its roots of ‘vegetable’ tanning – a technique which is slow but creates strong and lasting leather. Using centuries old skills, natural seeds and barks native to South India, paid off as Hidesign became a leader in use of vegetable tanned leather across the globe. Hidesign also used Marca Punto for of stitching. It is a time-consuming process and is, therefore, a dying art. In this, every stitch is embossed by a heated metal foot.

All of Hidesign’s products are handcrafted using leather from its own tanneries. The brass buckles are sand casted and polished by hand at its own brass forge. The craftsmen know every stitch ending by hand and the leather is cut by fine pointed knives – a skill which takes years to master.Hidesign embraces the traditional, old and classy vibe which helped the brand disrupt the market in its own unique way.

Fresh
Food

Musthafa PC
Co-Founder and CEO, iD Fresh
Founded in 2005, iD Fresh always been about preserving the tradition of Indian cooking. Idli batter was iD Fresh’s first product and still remains more than half of its staple earnings.

The co-founder and CEO, Musthafa PC, 44, was born in a village called Wayanad where his father worked as a daily wage labourer. His humble beginnings strengthened his social consciousness to build a world of equal opportunities.

Musthafa PC, a school dropout, went on to pursue Computer Science from NIT Calicut and his MBA from IIM Bangalore. He, along with his cousins, found a perfect mix of urad dal and rice which makes deliciously and soft idlis. The batter at iD Fresh is 100 percent natural.
Determined to make home-made food accessible to all, he identified gaps in the fresh food industry and came up with a perfect mixture on making good idlis. His hard work, determination and honesty paid-off and the company came into limelight when a little video on vadas at Harvard University went viral.iD Fresh promotes authentic Indian food and its brand philosophy of going preservative-free has helped the business evolve from a family-run business to a professionally-run organisation. Today, it operates in 24 cities across India and the UAE.

iD Fresh began operations with an initial capital of ₹ 50,000. The company further raised funds from various venture capitalists and the business began to expand. The brand's crore belief was to always resolve problems and identify possible solutions through innovation. Their latest innovation - a vada-maker - promises a perfectly shaped vada with a hole in the middle. iD Fresh is now betting big on this vada-maker. The company has filed patents for its unique nozzle design vada-maker in India and 140 other countries under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT).

Online
Grocer

Hari Menon
CEO and Co-Founder, BigBasket.com
With a vision of setting up India’s most comprehensive online food and grocery company, Hari Menon co-founded BigBasket.com in December, 2011. Today, not only has his vision come to fruition, his company's success has gone far beyond his imagination. BigBasket.com is now one of India’s largest online supermarkets with an expansive range of over 20,000 products and over 1,000 brands, and is available to consumers in 25 cities. As for revenue; in the first year itself, the company generated up to Rs 30 crore in Bangalore.

An alum of BITS Pilani, Menon’s entrepreneurial journey began in 1999 when he co-founded Fabmart, an e-commerce retail venture, and its on-ground extension, Fabmall, a chain of grocery stores in South India. This was acquired bythe Aditya Birla Group in 2006 and renamed ‘More’. He then used his understanding of the grocery and perishables supply chain business into developing BigBasket.com. As of today, BigBasket.com processes more than 85,000 orders per day, has a team of 16,000 members and a base of one crore customers.
An award-winning entrepreneur himself, Menon is passionate about music and is a former guitarist. But for now, he is focused on ensuring that consumers across the country get the best grocery products delivered to them in the comfort of their homes.

Instant
Meals

Ajay Gupta
Founder and Managing Director, Capital Foods Limited
Ajay Gupta, founder of Capital Foods, has a formidable advertising background. He spent several years as the chairman and managing director of Forefront Advertising and Marketing. That could be the secret sauce behind the strong brand recall of Ching’s Secret.

Capital Foods was launched in 1996 as a food company exporting frozen parathas among other Indian dishes to America and Europe before it embarked on the Ching’s journey in India.

Recognising the growth opportunity in the popular desi Chinese food in India, Gupta launched Ching’s Secret. It quickly grew to become one of the fastest growing F&B products in the country. The brand has seen A-list investors such as Kishore Biyani, The Invus group and General Atlantic join its successful ride. Its range of products include schezwan chutney, fried rice masala, instant soup and instant noodles.

With its clever distribution, smart advertising and unique positioning, Ching’s Secret has gained 30 percent market share in the instant soup category and 4 percent in the instant noodles category, creating a niche for itself in a space dominated by HUL’s Knorr and Nestle’s Maggi. Gupta’s entrepreneurial journey also includes the brand Smith & Jones, which sells pasta masala and ginger garlic paste.