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Wow! Momo eyes export markets, may develop another brand

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Quick service restaurant chain to add 100 more units

Wow! Momo, a quick service restaurant (QSR) chain which recently got funding from William Bissell, Fabindia managing director, is eyeing export markets.

The chain is also planning to develop one more brand.

Innovative menu

Also on the menu are gluten-free and diet-friendly innovations, Sagar Daryani, co-founder and CEO, told The Hindu. It is planning to go for an IPO in four to five years.

With ₹11 crore in debt and ₹55 crore equity, the start-up is held majorly by its three founders — college mates Sagar Daryani, Binod Homagai and Miftaur Rahman (75%), Lighthouse Funds (19%), India Angel Network (IAN) (5%) and William Bissell (about 1 %).

Mr. Bissell had invested ₹3 crore in the company in his personal capacity. Wow! Momo raised the first round of equity funding of ₹10 crore in 2015 from IAN. Lighhouse Funds invested ₹44 crore last year, making it the single largest infusion, said Mr. Daryani said.

In 2017-18, the company opened 65 new restaurants to close at 168 restaurants. It will add about 100 more this fiscal. Revenue rose from ₹49 crore to ₹75 crore with an estimated EBITDA of about 9%. It gets working capital and term loans from Bandhan Bank and HDFC Bank.

CFO Miftaur Rahman said the second brand that is being developed would cater to Chinese dishes where the customer would be able to customise the add-ons at a live kitchen in Wok format. This has already been unveiled at its signature restaurant on Park Street and would soon be introduced as separate outlets under the new brand by next quarter.

Wow! Momo had invested ₹3 crore and would pump in ₹10 crore in building a facility at an industrial estate which would also be utilised for servicing export market.

“We are working on our plans to tap the markets in the European Union and the Gulf Region,” Mr. Rahman said. The company’s capital requirements have been pegged at ₹50 crore during the current fiscal.

On IPO plans, he said that this was an aspiration for Wow! Momo, which will also help it raise capital competitively. “It also opens a lot of avenues for a company,” he noted, adding that the existing promoters were ready for a stake dilution of up to 20 %. “However, our timeline for a listing is about four to five years and pegged to a few milestones in our balance sheet,” he said.

Padmaja Ruparel, president, IAN said that Wow! Momo epitomises the success of the team spirit of a venture that could have been launched by anyone. “Innovations, focussed approach and the ability to execute and zeal is the success mantra of this venture,” she said.

(As published in www.livemint.com on Sun, June 24 2018. )