An IIT -IIM graduate with interests as diverse as mountaineering and event management, after having worked with the Global Markets Group at Standard Chartered Bank- Singapore, co- founded Red Ginger Hospitality India Ltd along with his spouse Neha Ahuja in 2007. He left his cushy job to do something he was passionate about- having a Restaurant of his own. Organized Retail had just started to grow in India in 2007 and Gaurav could clearly sense the huge opportunity that it posed as there was no national restaurant brand in India.
The company has grown from a single restaurant company to India’s premier restaurant chain in the past 14 years. Red Ginger is credited with bringing the concept of organized food courts to India. It had revolutionized the food court space in India by bringing in the common kitchen model for multiple brands. It was the first restaurant chain to have focused only on food courts and quick service dining. It has been a consistently profitable and cash flow positive company since inception primarily due to the revolutionary common kitchen model and the impeccable customer service.
In 2014, Gaurav sensed the tremendous growth in Indian Aviation and set up a separate vertical – Red Ginger Aviation Hospitality. World class service standards helped its’ Aviation Hospitality Division to forge strategic alliances with leading International Airlines like Indigo, Vistara, Air India, Qatar Airways, Air Asia and Spicejet in providing quality meals to their passengers. In 2018, the company won global contracts to operate master concessionaires at two leading airports in India.
Red Ginger is the youngest Indian company to be operating Master Concessionaires at Indian Airports. It operates more than 22 restaurants at 3 airports in India and has also been consistently rated very high on service standards in various Audits and Quality ratings. The company has recently commissioned a state of the art flight catering facility at the Lucknow International Airport, which can cater to 3000 in-flight passengers every day.
Red Ginger has won several accolades in the journey so far. Winning India’s most coveted Award – “The Coca Cola Golden Spoon Award for India’s Best Restaurant Chain” within 7 years of launch was a proud moment for Team Red Ginger. It was also awarded the Best Restaurant Chain of India by the India Restaurant Congress in 2014.
Gaurav was recognized as a CNBC TV18 Young Turk for being one of the youngest leaders in the modern F&B space. In 2012, The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) conferred upon him the “Young Entrepreneur of the Year” Award. Known for his participative style of leadership, his entrepreneurial journey has been covered as one of the 25 stories of IIML Entrepreneurs in the book “The Fresh Brew-Chronicles of Freedom”, which is now a bestseller on Amazon. Gaurav has been fostering the spirit of entrepreneurship at IIT Kanpur and IIM Lucknow by mentoring and investing in various startups for the past few years.
Gaurav has built a strong and focused senior management team at Red Ginger, which is driving growth and ensuring consistency in customer delight
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