Most urban homes cannot imagine how tough their lives would have been without PC Musthafa’s innovation! Yes, we are talking about the life-saving readymade idli and dosa batter. We are talking about the iD success story today.
A techie by profession, Musthafa’s dream of completing MBA from IIM brought him to Bangalore. This is where he took his first steps toward iD, giving up his safe profession to start iD with his cousins. Today, iD is a phenomenal name in the ready-to-cook food industry and a brand worth many hundred crores across India and the Middle East. This is an entrepreneurial success story that teaches us the value of realizing brilliant idea through innovation, team work, and foresight.
But where did the inspiration come from?
While at IIM, Musthafa would regularly meet up with his cousins, and it was one of his cousins who gave this brilliant idea. He mentioned a recent trend where shops were selling dosa batters in plastic bags. This seemed like quite an interesting idea to Musthafa and his cousins because this would be quite an advantage for working couples. They noticed a great potential in this business idea because the batter that was sold then was of really poor quality and possibly a health hazard.
This was when the entire concept of iD took shape – selling batter with zero artificial preservatives, great quality ingredients, and homemade taste. They rented a small space and started with just a couple of pieces of equipment and a small sum of money. Thus started the amazing journey of iD.
The success story of iD
The brand name iD grabbed the attention of their target audience and they soon started making a profit. With every significant success, they moved to a larger space and procured many more pieces of equipment. They also convinced many stores to partner with them and expand their reach. Today, iD has an extensive clientele across the country and even abroad and is a brand worth gaining inspiration from.
The challenges iD faced on their journey
Of course, the journey was not always smooth since there were quite a few hurdles to overcome.
- In a market where ready-to-cook meant preservative-laden food, the terms natural and additive-free were frowned upon with distrust. Hence gaining the trust of their target audience was quite a challenge. It required spreading awareness and proving their claims.
- They had zero knowledge of how this ready-to-cook industry worked when they got started. However, they gathered all the required expertise not just about the technique and industry, but also about the target audience and the entire technology.
- Keeping a steady flow of cash through every stage of the entrepreneurial journey was definitely a challenge. They had to think many times before digging into our savings every time.
But their patience, smart planning, perseverance, focus on technology, and a keen understanding of the market was critical in ensuring their humungous success.
The lessons worth learning from iD
The iD success story has many inspiring lessons indeed!
- Never shy away from following a unique concept or feature – turn it into a differentiator. In this case, their preservative-free approach was their differentiator that gave them an incredible edge over the competition.
- Create a clear brand positioning – whether it is quality, health-focused, or easy-to-cook. This positioning will give you clarity about who you are and how your audience should perceive you.
- The power of strong teamwork is definitely a great lesson from this story.
- The willpower to take risks – imagine a techie with an MBA from IIM taking a plunge into the food industry!
- Embrace technology whenever you can to solve repetitive issues and simplify processes.
- Treat your customers with respect – only then will they treat you well.
But, most important, today’s always the best time to start on an amazing entrepreneurial idea! Yes, as a first-time entrepreneur, most of us have a lot of concerns about getting our initiatives right. In such cases, it will be a great idea to get the support of an experienced business mentor who can support you. I will get back to you with more such inspiring stories soon.