"Brand Curry has started cooking" were the first remarks of the duo -- Subrato Chakraborty and Ratnodeep Rudra, directors of start-up Brand Curry, when they shared the news of their recent acquisitions with agencyfaqs!
The agency has just picked up the accounts of well-known Delhi-based restaurant chain Nirula's and Daawat basmati rice -- a product from LT Overseas, a north Indian fast food chain. The two businesses put together give the agency a billing of Rs 6 crore.
Brand Curry is, indeed, elated about the win. Getting the three businesses, according to Ratno, (he prefers Ratno to Ratnodeep Rudro) is an indication of the fact that companies are very open to working with start-ups. "Companies are warming up to start-ups and it looks like that the second phase of advertising boom belongs to the new players."
Daawat was won after a multi-agency pitch. While names of the agencies, who were in the fray, could not be ascertained, sources indicate that rmg david was defending the business. Talking about the task at hand for Daawat, Ratno says, "The main task for Daawat is to achieve leadership position in the category." Currently, Daawat is the the number two brand in the branded rice category; the first being Kohinoor.
"Given the budgets, we have to make every penny work harder. On our part, we will deliver cutting-edge creatives," says Ratno. "And since 80 per cent of the ad spends in this category is usually allocated for television, we will certainly use television extensively for Daawat too," Chakraborty adds.
Another big account that the agency is quite kicked about is Nirula's. The Nirula's business was won in a straight pitch. Though many agencies were in touch with the marketing department of Nirula's -- Brand Curry being one of them -- there was no formal pitch.
Sandeep Madan, general manager marketing, Nirula's Corner House, "Brand Curry was in constant touch with us. We were impressed by their commitment and enthusiasm and decided to partner them."
Elaborating on the need for a good partner at this juncture, Madan explains, "There is a need for fresh initiatives on image building exercises and appointment of the agency is the first step towards it." Ratno adds: "We were told by the client that they liked us because there was less of talk and more of work from us."
Nirula's is going to embark on an aggressive expansion plan. At the moment the chain has about 55 outlets in Delhi and a total of 60 including those at the National Capital Region (NCR), Patiala and Dehradun. In the first phase of the expansion, which is likely to start at end of the 2004, Nirula's is targeting markets in Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. The second phase would concentrate on markets in the western part of the country.
The communication challenge for Brand Curry is to focus on image building. "Nirula's is a great place, it has a considerable equity and our job is to give it a face lift," explains Ratno. In that context, brand building and promotional activities would be the core area of focus for both the agency and the company.
The media plan, as for now, would include print and outdoor. However, when the first phase of expansion gets activated, television too would be considered.
Ratno, now one of the directors at Brand Curry, came on board recently. His previous assignment was with Rediffusion | DYR as senior creative director. In the course of his 16 years of experience in advertising, Ratno has worked in several agencies -- including J Walter Thompson, Saatchi & Saatchi and Leo Burnett. In fact, Ratno and Chakraborty met at Leo Burnett. Some of the brands that Ratno has worked on, include Coca-Cola, Nestle, Glaxo-Smithkline Beecham and Canon. © 2004 agencyfaqs!