First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Sachin Sahni: By Gods grace, all are absolutely fine.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Keeros Superfoods.
Sachin Sahni: My (Sachin Sahni) & my cofounder (Simran Sahni) have been in the business of wellness (chain of wellness centers) for over a decade before starting Keeros Superfoods. When we used to do their diet counseling for various lifestyle issues like obesity, Diabetes, etc., they would ask if there are any good options available for ready to eat snacks or ready to cook meals that would be helpful in their health issues.
This got us thinking. The challenge was to come up with something that would be wholesome in nutrition, appealing to the taste buds, and at the same time, was also easy on the pocket. Another goal that spurred us on was the determination to create healthy-snacking options for people with Diabetes who had limited choices.
We got down to work and sought inspiration from traditional Indian foods and global health food trends. We experimented with different blends, learning something from each mistake and carrying on with the experience gained. Our perseverance finally paid off with the creation of a perfect blend of great taste and nutritional benefits -Keeros Roasted Supersnacks & superfoods that are Healthy for All & Safe for Diabetics.
How does Keeros Superfoods innovate?
Sachin Sahni: We keenly follow our customers’ needs & problems. He is our biggest mentor & source of new ideas for us.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Sachin Sahni: In March & April 2020, there was a complete lockdown in India, and hence we could hardly operate in those months. So it resulted in major losses for us & affected our cash flows very badly. Also, there were issues with broken supply chains. Then gradually, things started opening up. The offline sales dipped very steeply, but we saw a jump in e-commerce sales. We further equipped ourselves for the eCommerce channel & started seeing a 20-30 % jump in sales month on month. Due to COVID people had become more health-conscious & were looking more and more for healthier snacking & food options which helped us immensely.
Other things we did was –
- To hold on to the channels which were not profitable currently
- Cut on a lot of unnecessary expenses
- Renegotiate the rates with our vendors.
- Cutting the payment credit cycles or working on advance the only mode as much as possible. Launching new products
- Investing more in digital promotions
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Sachin Sahni: Yes, it was tough to abandon or put on hold 2 of our business channels like that of E -vending machines across the country.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety?
Sachin Sahni: I believe a strong body & mind will always be able to fight a crisis much better. So I believe in regular exercise & healthy eating for a strong body. For the inner strength & mental stability, I depend on spirituality, Yoga & meditation. The Holiest book for Indians – Geeta is the powerhouse of strength for me & millions of others.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Sachin Sahni: In the healthy snacking category, we a lot of competition. While the diabetic-friendly snacking category is still evolving & there is hardly any alternative, at least in the Indian market.
To stay in the game, we will be continuously looking to acquire more and more customers in newer markets & keep serving them by introducing them to better, tastier, healthier new products they would love to have.
Your final thoughts?
Sachin Sahni: Start-up founders have to go through a lot of highs & lows on a daily basis. But if one resolves to keep walking ( & not stop) through thick or through thin, success will ultimately be ours.