I have news for Mark Zukerberg, unknown to him; he is serving up some real spicy stuff at Nagpur.
The other day while I was driving past the Traffic Park in Dharampeth, one of Nagpur’s upmarket localities frequented by students, a ‘chaat thela’ caught my eye. Now this particular avenue is full of street food stalls, but this otherwise very ordinary stall really stood out because of its name.
‘Facebook Chat’ is what signboard atop it said. I am sure Mark never had this variety of Chat in mind when he launched the now ubiquitous Facebook.
For those who do not fancy Facebook there’s ‘Orkut Sevpuri, Twitter Paanipuri, Skype Bhel, Gtalk Dahi Bhalle and BBM Tikki Chaat, all Indian savories drooled over by young & old alike.
I decided to check the place out myself. I walked up to the pleasant looking youngster manning the place & asked him how did he come up with the idea of such a unique concept for his snack stall. Ramesh Verma, that’s him, told me that it was his youngest brother Raju, a 10th grade dropout who came up with all these ‘high-sounding’ names. “He dabbles a lot with computers & though I’m not too sure of what they mean, he surely was excited about them,” he added.
“When we saw this place blossoming into an entire street for foodies, as well as the crowds thronging the Traffic Park we felt this place held potential for us. But our problem was with so many similar stalls why would the customer come to us. And that’s when my youngest brother came up with this idea” says Ramesh.
Though in every other aspect the place serves up the usual fare, their unique naming strategy surely seems to be getting them a lot of attention. He proudly dug out a neatly laminated clipping of a local newspaper, talking about thier stall.
While the big brands may surely talk about segmenting the market and branding the offering, here was our homegrown entrepreneur a school dropout with no fancy MBA degrees to tout doing the same thing. This is yet another flavour of the now legendary Indian entrepreneurial spirit at work despite all odds. Even if it is only for their creative instincts, I do hope Ramesh & Raju succeed. And may a million Raju’s blossom with such unique & creative endevours.