Goeld’s range of frozen foods was introduced to produce sustainable and ethical products that were pure, unadulterated, and, of course, vegetarian.
According to Archit Goel, the executive director and CFO of Shri Bajrang Alliance Ltd., the Raipur-based concern that owns the Goeld Frozen Food brand, they are a company that is heavily involved in steel, mining, media, and the education sector.
Our group chairman, Suresh Goel (who also happens to be my uncle), wanted to diversify into the FMCG sector. We decided that we should explore a sector where we could look at producing good, pure food and decided to venture into the frozen food business,” said Goel.
The foundation stone for the factory in Raipur, Chhattisgarh, was laid on March 19, 2022. The factory was inaugurated a few months later, in June 2022, in a virtual ceremony by the chief minister of Chhattisgarh, Bhupesh Baghel, he said, adding that in the very same month they sent out their first consignment to Mumbai. The company has initiated operations in Mumbai, Pune, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Visakhapatnam.
For the HORECA segment, Goeld is doing products like the paratha, like our very popular Malabar parotta, and has customers like Swiggy, Ola Foods, and Barbeque Nation, who buy our parathas in large volumes running into tons.
Talking about numbers, they sell close to two-and-a-half lakh pieces per month and have samosas, spring rolls, and naans—the latter being unique to them as there aren’t very many frozen naan producers.
The company also has a large variety of cheese products, which are also not very commonly available, Goel said.
The cold chain was a major issue in our country and many other places. The company had been able to build their retail network over 24 months and was now present in 42 cities across India. The challenges they faced in their retail business included partners who were not well equipped to handle frozen products.
They, as manufacturers, needed to make a durable product because a consumer wouldn’t blame the retailer for a bad product, he would blame the brand. A lot of R&D went into manufacturing a product to ensure that it could withstand a certain amount of temperature fluctuation, he added.
HORECA supplies, on the other hand, were direct from warehouses—the company had them in Chennai, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Jalandhar, Jammu & Kashmir, Guwahati, Kolkata, Bhubaneshwar, New Delhi, and Raipur.
Goel said he would like to continue to be involved in both the HORECA and retail businesses at the same level as he was currently—36–37 percent of the business is HORECA, with retail close to 50 percent and the rest being export (the company sends its products out to the US, Australia, Saudi Arabia, and has recently done a tie-up with Lulu). The investment made into the business currently stands in the region of INR 45 crores, and they are also currently looking to expand their range of parathas.
The idea was to double production volumes by October 2022, increasing from 6,000 kg to 12,000 kg per day. “We have the land and permission from both the state and the central governments to expand. “It is just the market that we need to look at, and if everything goes well and stays within the financial limits, we are ready to expand with the blessings of our investors,” he added.