Cafe Coffee Day

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Café Coffee Day (CCD) is an Indian café chain. It is a subsidiary of Coffee Day Enterprises Limited. Coffee Day serves 1.8 billion cups of coffee annually in six countries. Founded under the name “Café Coffee Day Global Limited Company” is a Chikkamagaluru-based business that grows coffee in its own estates of 20,000 acres. It is the largest producer of arabica beans in Asia, exporting to various countries including the U.S., Europe, and Japan.

Cafe Coffee Day Owner

Under the visionary leadership of V.G Siddhartha Cafe Coffee Day, Global Limited decided to open cafe shops starting from Bangalore as a pilot project.

ccd outletSource: magician

The first CCD outlet was set up on July 11, 1996, at Brigade Road, Bangalore, Karnataka. It rapidly expanded to other cities in India, with more than 1000 cafés open across the nation by 2011.

The Leader

V.G SiddharthaSource:

At the age of 24, he joined J M Financial Limited in 1983–1984 in Mumbai as a management trainee/intern in portfolio management and securities trading on the Indian stock market. After two years he returned to Bangalore.

With capital given by his father, Siddhartha bought stocks worth Rs. 30,000 and started the company Sivan Securities. In 1999, it was renamed Way2wealth Securities Ltd. Its venture capital division came to be known as Global Technology Ventures.

He also served on the board of directors of Mindtree, GTV, Liqwid Krystal, Way2wealth Brokers, Coffee Day Natural Resources, and Way2wealth Securities.

He was the first entrepreneur in Karnataka to set up a café in 1996 (Café Coffee Day, a chain of “youth hangout” coffee parlors). By 2018, the chain had over 1700 cafés in India. His cafes attract 40,000 to 50,000 visitors a week.

The Tragedy Strikes

V.G Siddhartha Founder of CCD went missing on 29th July when he did not return back from the walk that he was taking on the bridge of the southern coastal city of Mangaluru, Bangalore.

His driver reported him missing within a few hours.

His body was found by a few fishermen on 31st July marking the end of this Visionary who brought Cafe drinking culture to India.


Business Lessons that we can learn from CCD

Though it is a tragedy to lose such a leader it is important that Entrepreneurs like ourselves learn from this case study:

1. Learn from Peers Mistakes

learningCafe Coffee Day went into debt & huge loses when they went for IPO & could not make as much money as they thought they would be able to.

We can not control market forces but since expansion needed to be continued they were in debt.

The same happened for “Starbucks” a few years ago when Howard Schultz placed the reins of Starbucks in somebody else’s hands, Starbucks faced losses.

Howard Schultz came back & took back control of his company. Starbucks had to close some stores but Howard made sure the communication was clear to the world & his community of Baristas regarding the specific reasons to close down some outlets.

Cafe Coffee Day went on the same route they could have very well studied Starbuck’s model & either slowed down their expansion or closed down some outlets to cut down their losses.

2. Take TIME OUT to Unwind

time outsource:

As Entrepreneurs, we have this constant urge to keep ourselves busy with day to day operations. We feel guilty if we are not busy in our work as we think we are slagging off.

But is slagging off so bad???

I urge each one of you to take some time out from your day to day operations not for holidays but for “Strategising” .

Think about where you wanted to go & if it is still the right path to take. Sometimes market conditions change so our previous decisions are not valid anymore. We might have to fast forward our plans or postpone our plans & that’s ok too.

You will come to this conclusion only if you have some time to look at what’s happening in your business from a distance so take some time every quarter or so & go away to think about whether the direction your business is heading in the RIGHT one for you.

3. DONT Scale too Quickly

The scale is what we look at as Businessmen & Women. We want to grow big but also quickly so we can relax in our Fifties or Forties & enjoy life.


But Businesses do not work like that. It takes 7 – 10 years for any business to sustain in the market.

We keep getting bombarded about how a 21 year old is earning Millions. That may be accurate only if he started working when he was 10 or 11 years old.

Even in today’s world where technology rules most of the businesses, it still takes proportionate time for businesses to scale & sustain.

So be patient.

When you look at Starbucks, even they did not launch in India with full force though they have the backing to do it if they wanted to.

That is because they learned their lessons in other markets.

So tread carefully & scale slowly for a sustainable business, remember the golden rule of business is “Business Continuity” not “Becoming Crorepati in 2 years”.

Disclaimer: These are purely my personal views & I am in no way demeaning Siddhartha for the decisions that he has taken for CCD. It is what is now because of him & we have nothing but deep respect for him as an Entrepreneur.

Have a great week ahead.

Reach out to us for a discussion on “Crafting a Digital Strategy for Your Brand” by emailing us at

Happy Marketing,

Sirisha Varma,
Founder, Chief Strategist,

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