What Business Are you In – Case Study: Cafe Coffee Day

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Who sells the largest number of cameras in India? Canon/Nikon/Sony? Well, the answer is Nokia.

As far as music sales is concerned, Airtel makes more money than SaReGaMa.

Is Indian Railways into the business of train travel? Or Travel? [and is competing with airlines as well as bus service?]

Is Video Conferencing service really in the business of conferencing? Or collaboration [aren’t they competing with airlines?]

The most difficult question for any company is to answer – ‘What Business are we in?’ [read: What Business Am I in – How many Startups can answer this?] and how can one build auxiliary/enabling services around the core product to increase the appCafe Coffee Dayeal-quotient of the business?

Coming back to the topic, i.e. what business is CCD into – let me share that I end up visiting atleast 2 CCDs a day (see I am not saying I visit 2 CCDs a day, I am actually, being forced to visit 2 CCDs a day owing to my business demand).

On a daily basis, I meet entrepreneurs/VCs etc and most of my meetings happen in the Coffee Days. Let me also admit that I hate going to Coffee Day, but prefer to use them for business meetings.

Why?

Because CCD is not just in the business of coffee. It’s in the business of enabling businesses/people to meet each other. Given CCD’s presence in Bangalore, the simplest meeting point that everybody knows is a CCD (it’s an easily identifiable landmark), as opposed to Barista/Lavazza which are quite lesser in number.

But is the coffee at CCD good? No, it’s just too bad. A lot worse than Barista.

But the hard reality is people are spending money, consuming coffee at CCD – much more than the coffee that is being consumed at Barista or other places.

So while others are building coffee business, CCD is building real estate/meeting-point business where coffee is just a by-product.

Does that make a great business sense? Is that the right approach to build business?

Well, you decide. But,do ask yourself – what business are you in? How can you build ‘enabling’ services to make people consume more of you?

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