Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies


Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies


Article excerpt


The case discusses the unique ideas and various marketing strategies adopted by the first mover iD Fresh Food on its journey to gain huge customer base in the Indian market. The case study examines the thought-provoking factors that have contributed to the victory of iD Fresh in gaining a remarkable success. The underlying issue of the case is to examine how far the close-knit management style is going to sustain its market leadership position in future. The case is aimed at students studying MBA and other related business management courses such as Entrepreneurship Development, Strategic Management, Brand Management, Marketing Communication and Marketing Management curriculum.


The Spectacular Backdrop of iD Fresh Batter

iD fresh food was founded in the year 2006 by an IIM-Bangalore alumnus PC Musthafa and his cousins, Shamsudeen TK, Abdul Nazer, Jafar TK and Noushad TD. P C Musthafa is the Chief Executive Officer. The idea was introduced by PC Musthafa when his cousin, who had a kirana store constantly complained about the quality of dosa and idli mixes produced by the local vendor. During the time which Musthafa had spent on weekends in the kirana shops he noticed that the idly dosa batter which were sold in transparent unbranded polythene bags and tied with a rubber band used to sell out very quickly (Bureau, 2017). That was when the new business idea emerged. iD Fresh Foods was started in a 550 sq.ft room with one batter grinder and a packaging machine. The name iD was suggested by one of the cousin as an acronym for idli dosa (Anon, 2017). Eventually, the venture was named "iD Fresh" indicating an identity for fresh idli and dosa batter.

PC Mustafa, the CEO of iD fresh foods was a son of a coolie hailing from a distant village of Kerala, India. Mustafa was a sixth grade failure, but continued to pursue his studies and graduated from the National Institute of Technology, Calicut and IIM Bengaluru. Musthafa's contribution to the initial investment was of Rs.25,000. Today, Mustafa heads a Rs. 1,000 million company, iD Fesh Foods whose products are sold in important Indian cities and in a few overseas locations also.

iD Fresh's Growth Momentum

The complexities of the dual income group and the hurly-burly urban life have greatly encouraged the entry of class of foods called Ready-To-Cook (RTC). iD fresh foods are known for their traditional recipes and high standards of hygiene. The batter is freshly ground and packed every single day. The batter is made by grinding the finest quality of rice, split black lentil, fenugreek seed and RO purified water and low sodium salt. The batter is completely free from preservatives, chemicals and artificial flavors. The conventional ratio of 1:4 proportion of lentil to rice and a 0.01 portion of fenugreek seeds are maintained. The product is in semi-solid state, which is the correct consistency to make idlis and dosas. The product has an aroma like that of homemade batter.

The batter is neatly packed and sealed in such a way that it facilitates the batter to be easily transferred to a bowl. Until 2014, the batter use to come in a sealed pack where the customers had to cut open the pouch and transfer the contents into a bowl to store it. Later, with a packaging innovation they introduced a special type of packaging called "transformer pouch". This is a sealed pouch, when opened takes on the shape of the container and can also be stored in the same pack. Customers are assured that they can make both idlis and dosas with the same batter by mixing water in it.

The Take-Off

Starting from wet idly dosa batter, the company currently offers a wide range of products to its customers. With its wide array of products, the company seeks to customize its products to cater to the Indian palate. The company has introduced some of the Indian breads like "just heat" whole wheat parota, "just heat" whole wheat chappathi, "just heat" malabar parota, "just heat" whole wheat parota junior, "just heat" mini parota, besides udupi style idly-dosa batter, natural gms-Rs. …

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