Shake it off, a Milkshake-bar concept was started by Nishant Tripathi with his co-founder in 2016. Shake it Off (SIO) has been one of the early movers to bring the concept of thick milkshakes to Bangalore. Nishant is passionate about building brands on the pillar of customer satisfaction. In just about 4 years the brand has started operations in Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai and is continuously expanding in Southern India. SIO operates on a hybrid model with a mix of physical and cloud kitchen model.
In Conversation With Nishant Tripathi, Co-Founder of Shake It Off
In an exclusive conversation with The Restaurant Times, Nishant Tripathi, Co-Founder of Shake It Off shares his thoughts on the company’s growth strategy and how cloud kitchen is a recipe for revival for restaurants in 2021.
Shake It Off Business Model And Strategy Going Forward
The brand initially started off with the brick-and-mortar restaurant model, offering only 12 shakes in the initial stages. However, the menu evolved after gaining inputs from customers, franchise partners, and by analyzing the demand for the milkshake category in the market.
In 2016, the brand found that only 20% of revenue came via online platforms. Nishant, however, mentions that by the following year the situation changed considerably with over 40% orders coming via online channels. The brand experimented with a hybrid model; a mix of cloud kitchen and retail outlets and later expanded to the franchise model.
Shake It Off has already set up retail outlets as a part of their master franchise program in Hyderabad and Chennai. The brand would be expanding in these cities once when the pandemic situation is under control. Nishant mentions that Shake it Off also has plans to explore options in Pune, Mumbai, and Delhi.
Nishant’s perspective on how Shake It Off differentiates itself from other brands in a highly competitive market segment i.e shakes.
- The brand never compromises on the quality and consistency of the product. Even when the sales are low, they ensure that the quality of the product is always up to the point.
2. The Unique Selling Proposition (USP) of SIO is serving a complete experience and not just a shake. Along with shakes, the brand also serves quick bites like sandwiches, burgers, momos, Maggi, pasta, etc in order to give customers a very satisfying experience.
3. The retail stores, though smaller in size, exhibit a unique and quirky experience to the customers.
4. The franchise restaurants have a flexible business model which helps potential investors to associate well with the brand.
Impact of COVID-19 on the business
In the initial stages of the pandemic situation, Shake It Off started losing out the franchise partners. Nishant mentions that they had to persuade the partners to pause the operations and resume the business once when the situation comes under control. The brand had to lay off the employees, absorb a lot of inventory from the franchise and own stores, and discard them. After the unlock phase the brand was better prepared with more measures and started the business with cost-cutting measures.
Cloud Kitchen Model Opportunity
According to Nishant, Cloud kitchens give a wonderful opportunity to utilize the resources to open more revenue channels. With a cloud kitchen model, one can utilize the same infrastructure, raw materials, resources, manpower, etc, and easily create a new brand.
The cloud kitchen business model has been of great value for Shake It Off, says Nishant. Without incurring any extra costs, the brand has been able to increase the sales opportunity too. The brand observed a high volume of orders coming at late night in cities like Delhi where the night food delivery regulations are not stringent. Nishant also adds that by adopting the cloud kitchen model, the brand can also cater to late-night orders.
Nishant believes in taking efforts and optimizing the bottom line for better visibility and success. He mentions that SIO has started taking efforts and measures to promote customers such as adopting a contactless menu, promoting the contactless menu on WhatsApp, taking social media orders, implementing loyalty programs, etc.
Shake It Off has also implemented technology solutions to streamline all the restaurant operations starting from marketing, inventory management, CRM, etc. According to Nishant, investing in technology helps save a lot of pilferages and makes it easier to manage the entire working of a restaurant.
Nishant concludes the session by highlighting the significance of hygiene and technology for restaurant businesses in 2021.
“Hygiene has to be of paramount importance for the restaurant businesses in 2021. Also, Technology adaptation for every aspect of your restaurant operations is going to be very important going forward.”
Watch Nishant Tripathi in an exclusive F&B Talks session with The Restaurant Times.