Lite Bite Foods ties up with HMSHost

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New Delhi | September 06, 2015 12:02 AM

Imagine sitting at a railway station platform, where you're waiting for a train that is delayed. Hunger pangs drive you the nearest refreshments stall...

Imagine sitting at a railway station platform, where you’re waiting for a train that is delayed. Hunger pangs drive you the nearest refreshments stall but you’re looking for something more than the usual chai and biscuits. Pretty soon, passengers around the country will have the chance to grab a slice of their favourite pizza or savour sumptuous dishes from their preferred regional or international cuisine.

In a big move for the food & beverage (F&B) sector, Lite Bite Foods and HMSHost International have joined forces this week to open F&B outlets at retail destinations such as railway stations, highways and airports across the country. The joint venture, Lite Bite Foods HMSHost, will bid to gain rights to operate domestic and international F&B outlets in India. It will also pour in R100 crore in the next three to four years to nurture more travel destinations.

Amit Burman-led Lite Bite Foods has brands such as Punjab Grill, Baker Street, Fresc Co, Subway and Zambar under its belt, while HMSHost – a part of the Autogrill Group – has vast experience in providing F&B services to travellers the world over. “We believe HMSHost are very good operators in India and all around the world. When you go to different airports or travel destinations, it all depends on the opportunity of what is there and which brands you can get in. They (HMSHost) work with a host of brands, so whichever brand fits into a destination or travel detail, we’ll bring that it in,” said Burman, chairman of Lite Bite Foods.

The joint venture will be based out of Gurgaon, with HMSHost and Lite Bite owning 51% and 49% of the venture, respectively.

Walter Seib, CEO, HMSHost International, said: “We started in 2006-07 and looked at the market. There was a lot of potential. So, in order to tap that potential, we felt it was appropriate to tie up with a good company. And Lite Bite is a well-reputed company in India,” says Seib.

The joint venture will be based out of Gurgaon, with HMSHost and Lite Bite owning 51% and 49% of the venture, respectively.

Burman, of Lite Bite, added that with a pool of nine to 12 brands, they will have a lot of picks to take to the airports but other avenues will also be attractive options in the future. “For Lite Bite Foods, business today is 50% in travel and 50% in malls and high streets. There is a lot of opportunity in terms of new airports. The railways will also be a huge opportunity. As a JV, we are looking at that. Maybe, later on corporate business parks would be something we may look at,” he added.

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