India is a nation that celebrates chai (tea). Steeped in cultural significance, every cup of tea brings comfort, connection, and community. Amidst the many tea stalls dotting the country’s streets, a unique venture called Chai Sutta Bar has emerged as a popular name. This brand has not only revolutionized the traditional tea-serving model but has also turned into a business behemoth with a net worth of around Rs 150 crore.
The man behind this thriving enterprise is Anubhav Dubey, an entrepreneur whose life and business accomplishments are as invigorating as the tea he sells.
Anubhav Dubey: A Visionary Entrepreneur
Anubhav Dubey, the founder and owner of Chai Sutta Bar, hails from a humble background in Rewa, Madhya Pradesh, India. Born on January 1, 1996, he completed his schooling at Maharishi Vidya Mandir, Rewa, and went on to pursue higher education at Renaissance College of Commerce and Management.
With aspirations of cracking the UPSC exam, Anubhav moved to Delhi for preparation. However, destiny had other plans for him. As he served tea to his friends while studying, a business idea started brewing in his mind. Teaming up with his Indore-based friend Anand Nayak, he set up a small tea stall near a girls’ dormitory in Delhi. Thus, Chai Sutta Bar came into existence.
Anubhav’s perseverance and innovative business model led to the expansion of the Chai Sutta Bar brand. Today, they run over 165 outlets in 70+ cities across India and in four other countries, including Canada, USA, Dubai, Muscat, Oman, and Nepal. Despite being just 26, Anubhav has grown his business to a remarkable value of Rs 100 crore. His personal net worth is estimated at around Rs 10 crore, according to a report by DNA.
The Genesis of Chai Sutta Bar
Chai Sutta Bar Private Limited, an unlisted private company, was formally established on January 17, 2018, with its headquarters in Indore, Madhya Pradesh. Starting with a paid-up capital of INR 10,000 and an authorised share capital of the same amount, the company showed impressive growth in just a few years.
For the fiscal year ending on March 31, 2021, Chai Sutta Bar’s operating sales ranged between INR 1 to 100 crore. The company’s EBITDA increased by a staggering 1,293.31 percent over the previous year, and its net worth grew by 161.50 percent.
The Journey: From a Tea Stall to a Nationwide Venture
When Anubhav received a call from his friend Anand with a business proposition, he decided to pivot from his UPSC preparation and ventured into the entrepreneurial world. The duo, armed with a vision and a modest sum of three lakhs, set about finding a location for their venture. Their search led them to a vacant cement shop in Bhawarkuan, Indore.
Their initial days were marked by significant challenges. With their limited funds exhausted, they had to personally manage everything from construction to interior design. They even hand-painted the name “CHAI SUTTA BAR” on a plywood board when they couldn’t afford a proper signboard.
Despite the challenges, they persevered. On the first day, they served free chai to everyone, hoping to attract customers. Anubhav’s strategic location near a girls’ hostel paid off when he invited his friends over for breakfast, creating a buzz that attracted more patrons.
The Breakthrough and Expansion
Over time, Chai Sutta Bar became a well-loved hangout spot, with a steady increase in daily customers. Anubhav and Anand employed clever marketing strategies to further their brand reach, such as public discussions about their thriving cafe. This generated curiosity, bringing in new customers.
Their business model was a success, and they began franchising. Their fourth outlet was in Mumbai, a remarkable achievement considering they had started in Indore, often called “Mini-Mumbai”, just six months prior.
Anubhav Dubey: Beyond the Chai Sutta Bar
Beyond his tea business, Anubhav Dubey has varied interests. He heads the Farz Foundation, assisting those in need, and has received the Young Change Maker Award from the UN. He is also the proprietor of Tech Master Gogo, an IT business, and Chai Sutta Bar Trading Pvt. Ltd., which trades ceramic products. He also plans to launch the non-vegetarian food brand “2 boti 4 roti.”
His Chai Sutta Bar now employs about 1500 people and sells over 3 lakh kulhad (earthen cups) of tea daily. Despite a few hiccups, including two drug raids at the Chai Sutta Bar, Anubhav has managed to keep his business thriving.
Anubhav Dubey’s story is a testament to the power of determination and entrepreneurship. His journey, from serving tea to friends to owning a successful international brand, is a source of inspiration for young entrepreneurs across the globe. Chai Sutta Bar’s success story brews not just a strong cup of tea, but also a strong dose of motivation, one sip at a time.