National Restaurants Association of India, the prevailing boys that works closely with the top most organised players in the country has a new team in place. Kabir Suri, Founder and Director of Azure hospitality took over as the President, followed by the exit of Anurag Katriar, Executive Director and CEO of Indigo Hospitality. Kabir brings with him a wealth of experience in the F&B Insudtry spanning over a quarter century and has been credited with nurturing and building Marurai brands such as Mamagato, Dhaba by Claridges, Sly Granny, Foxtrot Speedy Chow, Rollmaal, Mamapaati to name a few.
With a policy of “rotation by responsibility”, over 20% of the Management Board members were also shuffled in it’s Annual General Meeting held recently. NRAI represents he interests of over 5 lakh restaurants across the country valued at over Rs. 4 lakh crores in annual revenues. the AGM was attended by Industry bigwigs including AD Singh, Olive Bar and Kitchen, Rahul Singh, The Beer Cafe, Riyaz Ambani, Social among others.
Speaking of his appointment, Suri said in a statement, “I will strive to lead the Indian Restaurant Industry into a new era of prosperity, participation and positive perception which advances and safeguards the entrepreneurial spirit. Our collective passion and shared spirit of hospitality will enhance the quality of life that we serve.” Anurag Katriar, Past President and Trustee, NRAI, while announcing the new appointments said, “Restaurant Industry stalwarts have come together to promote and strengthen the Indian Food Services sector. I am extremely thankful to each one of them for agreeing to contribute their valuable time, expertise and efforts for bringing ease of doing business to our industry.”
The Restaurant Industry has been one of the most affected due to the ongoing pandemic in more ways than one. While those with adequate cash flows and a long-term business outlook have survived the onslaught, that bottom most ones have suffered the most. At an Industry level, the business has been plagued with issues ranging from staff migration to their home towns, increased cost of business operation including maintaining higher standards and non-cooperation from several landlords who have refused to come down on the rent. Add to it, the online delivery partners who have taken over a large chunk of the dining business, making the restaurants vulnerable due to the undue advantage the platforms command over their business.