Chimonix Gourmet Network Private Limited has just launched ‘Yogo’- Yummy Yogurts’- fat-free desserts, high on taste and the new flavour of the season. Point-of-Purchase meets up with Rahul Bhutoria, Managing Director, Chimonix on the occasion of the opening of the brand’s first flagship store at New Alipore in the ‘City of Joy’ to know how they plan to position frozen yogurts as a lifestyle product aiming to enhance a healthy diet lifestyle with a difference. Excerpts from the interview.
As told to Nabamita Chatterjee
challenging it is to carve out a niche especially in such a competitive market? Frozen Yogurt is the new buzz in the frozen desert segment, as it is a healthier alternative to ice-creams and gelatos. In Eastern India, since the product has been recently launched, the market was pretty virgin. The self service (weigh and pay) concept is also new and we are the first in eastern India to bring this concept. The consumers will be able to experience the power of choice according to this model, where a customer can dispense as much quantity as he wants from as many as 10 flavours at a time and along with approximately 30 toppings in one go. The entire quantity is then weighed and charged at the rate of 65 paisa per gram. Thus, the consumer has the power to choose, mix and match and at the same time has the freedom to decide how much he wants to spend. The approximate price range at the store is between Rs.30 and Rs.150 depending upon the quantity So given the above how would you define your USP and value additions?
Our USP lies in the following:
Self Serve (Weigh and Pay) Own Brand – Therefore, we can evolve as per our own environment and to the customer’s comfort. We’ll have our own ethos and learning built into the Brand Indian Flavours- Most of the Frozen Yogurt outlets in India are franchise of international chains and therefore Indian Flavours such as Keshar Elaichi, Nalen Gur which people have grown up with are not available easily. We are the first in India to launch Indian Flavours in Frozen Yogurt. Do you target a specific segment of consumers? Who are your typical consumers? The concept of ‘Weigh and Pay’ leaves the freedom and power in the hands of the customer to take as much or as little as one pleases and the level of spend as well. This freedom has opened doors to all segments of customers. Our typical customers are the youth of today who are more health conscious and yet want to grab a bite out of home every now and then. Moreover, the older generation is also enjoying our product just as much. It is typical to see families with 2-3
generations enjoying YOGO together. What does it take to capture and then retain this segment of consumers? Could you just elaborate based on your experiences? The buying experience of self-serve, self-choice and complete freedom with flavors & toppings was the first feature that actually attracts the customer. Our constant effort is to maintain the quality
and flavor consistency which would help us to retain our customers. In fact, we change at least one flavor every week to give our consumers something new every time they visit our outlet. It is just amazing to see even a 7 year old so excited about creating their own sundaes. While the granddaughter loves the bubblegum flavour topped with Gems, the grandfather can be seen digging into the Kesar Elaichi. How much of your efforts towards capturing the shoppers happen at the store? Could you tell us about some of your in-store initiative plans such as displays, promos etc. How do you think these influence the shoppers? We believe constant communication with the customers is always beneficial for any business. Displays and promos at the store help educate the customers about the benefits of the product. Since the product is fairly new in Eastern India, educating the customers with the product benefits is the key to get them. Attractive displays not only inform the customer, they also induce them to choose their preference. We plan to bring in the concepts of Priority / Loyalty cards for regular customers to create a sense of belonging. Any new trends that you are seeing in terms of consumer behavior/buying pattern? What does this mean to you as a brand/retailer? Customers today are not only willing but quite eager to try new products & cuisines. However, it’s the quality & the taste that brings them back. An average consumer does not mind the price as long as the product is tasty, healthy and there is ‘Value for money’. Further, people today are looking for healthier alternatives without altering their current lifestyle. This shows us that a tasty & healthy product with consistency will always grow and do well. Going further what are your plans in terms of expansion all over India? The first store of the brand is followed by another outlet at the Theatre Road, Kolkata, before the Diwali. We plan to open 100 outlets in the next 5 years with an approx. investment of Rs 30 crore. The stores would be both - Single and Franchise outlets and also there would be a mix of sit-ins and kiosks in prominent malls across the cities. The expansion strategy will be based upon the objective of creating the brand as a dominant leader in the frozen yogurt category. Yogo signifies and conveys the contemporary nature of ‘yogurt’ along with the objective of capturing the imagination of consumers all across and at the same time creating an exceptionally strong emotional connection. Though the frozen yoghurt market is niche in India, the entry of Yogo is seen as a challenge to the other brands that has been considered as a crucial player in this segment in India