- Indian's are increasingly hiring MNC food brands to cater and make their weddings stand out from the rest.
- This provides MNC food brands with fantastic opportunity to connect with their target customers - while being paid to do so.
- But MNCs need to be selective and make sure the weddings they cater match the brands' objectives.
- If you cannot maintain the quality of your product in a wedding setting, then the only winning move is not to play.
- The key India marriage seasons are November-February and April-May.
Imagine having MNC fast-food chains such as Domino's, Costa Coffee, Haagen-Dazs and Baskin Robbins entertaining guests at your wedding. The Indians are doing it. India definitely sets the standard for wedding ceremonies. One way the rich marriage hosts now seek to make their wedding stand apart from the rest is to have MNC branded food and beverage stalls at the wedding ceremony. Some even go so far as to replicate their outlets in malls, complete with similar seating arrangements.
A Fantastic Consumer Connect
MNCs are attracted to this trend because it provides them a direct channel to their target audience. They are in effect being paid to promote themselves to the wedding audience, which just happens to be their target demographic.
A Haagen-Dazs parlour costs 5-8 lakh (INR 500,000 - 800,000) for one evening. A Costa Coffee bar costs about 3 lakh (INR300,000).
New and Growing Business Channel
Caterers and wedding planners say the demand for branded food has gathered pace in the last 2 years. 15-20% of weddings these days demand branded stalls along with traditional snacks and cuisines. Demand for branded outlets is a growing trend all over the country, particularly in Chennai, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Mumbai, Punjab and Delhi.
Dominos is taking advantage of this growing demand by forming a separate vertical for outdoor catering with dedicated staff, cold vans, pizza ovens and other paraphernalia in select markets such as Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, cities in Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. Domino's says wedding accounts for 50% of the outdoor catering vertical's revenues during the marriage seasons of November-February and April-May.
But Need to be Selective
A company must be selective about the kind of marriages they go to. Revenue is not huge, so one must balance the consumer visibility, the wedding profile and the number of wedding guests.
And Not For Every Company - Must Be Able To Maintain Product Quality
McDonald's India does not do outdoor catering. Creating and relocating a full store at weddings is logistically very difficult. More importantly though, it is difficult to maintain the quality of its products outside its outlets. In this situation, the only winning move is not to play.
People are willing to spend to make theirs a grand Indian wedding. Wedding hosts want the snob value and the bragging rights to have famous MNC brands at their weddings. Indian weddings are becoming more and more about ostentatious showmanship with hosts wanting emphasize the specialness of the wedding event.
Source: "MNC food giants like Domino's, Costa Coffee, Haagen-Dazs eye a fast buck at Indian weddings", Economic Times of India, February 21, 2013
CKB Solutions is all about real solutions for the real world. To learn how we can help your business, contact Greg Kovacic in Hong Kong.