Manpreet Singh, Treasurer, National Restaurant Association of India & Owner – Zen, Fujiya & Phoolwari (Delhi)

Manpreet Singh is the owner of celebrated restaurants like Zen and Fujiya and also a treasurer at NRAI (National Restaurant Association of India).

Podcast

Overview

“The most important thing is hard work. Without it, you can’t get anywhere”

The Brand Called You welcomes Manpreet Singh, a renowned restaurant owner from New Delhi. Owner of celebrated restaurants like Zen and Fujiya, Manpreet is also the Treasurer of the National Restaurant Association of India. 

The year and a half-long and ongoing pandemic have greatly affected almost all businesses and industries.  One of the worst struck businesses in the face of Covid 19 is the restaurant industry. With strict lockdowns all over the world, hotels have remained shut for many months now. In this episode with host Ashutosh Garg, Manpreet is in a discussion about his profession and the changes that the restaurant industry has faced during the pandemic. Manpreet talks about the National Restaurant Association and its increasing members and yearly turnovers. The restaurant industry is the third-largest industry in India, after retail and insurance. Manpreet talks about the ongoing problems due to the pandemic and how restaurant owners are dealing with these problems. Manpreet mentions that while online food delivery services like Zomato and Swiggy have striking sales, the money is all going into dark kitchens. He believes that an in-restaurant experience is personal and enriching for the customers. He talks about retaining loyal employees and shares a very sweet anecdote about one of his employees.

According to Manpreet, hard work is the key to any business or job. He strongly advises being honest towards one’s work. Tune in to know more about the hotel industry and the amazing restaurants Manpreet runs!

Profile

Did my schooling from St. Columbus and started working at Fujiya Restaurant straight after school to augment my pocket money. While working I did Economics (Hons) from Hindu College.

Did training at Taj Mahal Hotel, Man Singh Road, New Delhi, and worked with them thereafter for about one year. Thereafter I started working at Chungwa Restaurant, Defence Colony which is now shifted to Greater Kailash part 2.

In 1984 I opened my own company and took over Phoolwari Restaurant in Pragati Maidan where we specialized in holding Conferences, Meetings, Annual General Meetings, Company events, Weddings, Receptions, and other such functions. We also catered to various exhibitions which were taking place in Pragati Maidan. We even organized a couple of functions at the President’s House.

In 1992 I opened Zen Restaurant in Connaught Place, which is running successfully in its 30th year.

In 2000 I gave up Phoolwari and started the process of reducing my responsibilities and started enjoying life. Now I work for 3-4 hours a day and I enjoy my yoga and Lodi Garden walks on a daily basis. Besides this, I like to travel and I am out of the country about 2-3 times a year, besides my local jaunts.

Currently, I am also a treasurer at NRAI (National Restaurant Association of India). NRAI is the Indian Restaurant Industry’s leading Association. Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Delhi, it is the voice of the restaurant industry representing the interests of 5,00,000+ restaurants pan India. The restaurant industry, with an annual turnover of ~ INR 4 Lakh Crore is the third-largest after retail and insurance in the service segment, providing direct employment to over 7 million Indians. At NRAI we are trying to reduce compliance and make it easier for the new entrants to open restaurants so that we can expand the industry. It is quite challenging but satisfying.

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