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NRAI’s 37th AGM: Anurag Katriar takes over as the New President of the National Restaurant Association of India


New Delhi, September 13, 2019: Anurag Katriar, Executive Director & CEO, deGustibus Hospitality, took over as the new President of the National Restaurant Association of India at its 37th Annual General Meeting held in New Delhi yesterday. The appointment was made unanimously after Rahul Singh, Founder & CEO, The Beer Café’s tenure came to an end.

Anurag has been part of the industry for over a quarter of a century. He has been pivotal in the growth and success of one of the fastest growing hospitality companies, with ever so popular brands under its wing such as Indigo, Indigo Deli, Neel, D:OH!, Tote on the Turf and Moveable Feast. He joined the company in January 2004 when it had only one operating restaurant, to-today where he is the Executive Director & CEO. Katriar also recently led the foray of deGustibus Hospitality into the QSR segment with exciting brands such as Indigo Burger Project and Dakshin Rasoi, apart from curating an exciting & upmarket food court called “Eleven Kitchens” at Nariman Point in Mumbai. His vision for the company is to make it the most admired F&B Company in India & to be one of the first successful Indian F&B companies on a global platform. He was earlier a part of the Management Board of Mars Restaurants Pvt. Ltd., where he played a key role curating and expanding their brand portfolio with Dosa Diner and Roti. Anurag has been associated with NRAI as the Head for NRAI Mumbai Chapter and has taken incalculable efforts in resolving pressing issues of the industry.

Expressing gratitude to the Managing Committee, Anurag said, “I would like to thank the Managing Committee members in bestowing the trust in me to carry forward the 37 years legacy of our Association. I will strive to lead the Indian Restaurant Industry into a new era of prosperity, participation and positive perception which advances and safeguards the entrepreneurial spirit. Our collective passion and shared spirit of hospitality will enhance the quality of life that we serve.”

While signing off from duties, Rahul said, “NRAI was formed four decades back. This bold association has always fascinated me, and even more so, as I got to witness its purpose much more closely. When we look at its inception in 1982, I was wondering how in the past, the handling of the association could have been accomplished – without the communication tools of today. Equally a testimony to foresight, obstinacy and courage.

In the course of NRAI’s history, there have been periods in which a spirit of association has been felt to be other than one of positive activity. In particular, unity in our industry was partially neglected, and am stoked that we closed that gap. This phase reminds me that one should stay being an entrepreneur and not a “drifter”. After all, we have a duty to leave, for future generation, an industry which is viable and vibrant.

Am blessed to have led NRAI in this exhilarating tenure, and continue to serve as an able member. It’s never about the role you play, it’s always about the Goal. Am refiring, not retiring!

He further mentioned, “I am really proud to announce appointment of Anurag Katriar as the new President of the NRAI. With fresh ideas, new enthusiasm and excellent business acumen, Anurag will undoubtedly take the association and its endeavors to new heights.”

Rahul Singh completed the two year term as the President of NRAI this September. He will continue serving on the Managing Committee.

Reviewing the most critical year, the industry dealt with battling issues including the #Logout Movement, the National Restaurant Association of India in its 37th Annual General Meeting (AGM) yesterday announced a major reshuffle to its Managing Committee. The meeting was held at The Grand, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi.

Rahul Singh, Past President, NRAI, while announcing the new appointments said, “Restaurant Industry stalwarts have come together to promote and strengthen the Indian Food Services Sector. I am extremely thankful to each one of them for agreeing to contribute their valuable time, expertise and efforts for bringing ease of doing business to our beloved industry.”

New appointments made to the Managing Committee include: AD Singh (Managing Director, Olive Bar & Kitchen Pvt Ltd); Aditya Ladsaria (Co-Founder & Director, ALP Retail Pvt Ltd (Chai Break); Amit Arora, (CEO & MD, Buddy Retail), Chapter Head, Gurgaon; Amit Roy (Partner, Shilton Hospitality); Aseem Grover (Director, Big Chill Cafe); Gauri Devidayal  (Founder, Food Matters India); Kabir Advani (Managing Partner, Berco’s Restaurant); Manu Chandra (Chef Partner, Toast & Tonic, The Fatty Bao & Monkey Bar; & Executive Chef, Olive Beach), Chapter Head, Bengaluru; Pranav Rungta (Director, Mint Hospitality Pvt Ltd); Priyank Sukhija (Chairman, First Fiddle Hospitality); Rachel Goenka (Founder & CEO, The Chocolate Spoon Company); Rahul Kumar (MD & CEO, Red Mango India); Rahul Leekha (Director, Coffee by DiBella); Rahul Singh (Founder & CEO, Beer Café);  Riyaaz Amlani (CEO & MD, Impresario Entertainment & Hospitality Pvt Ltd); Rohit Aggarwal (Director, Lite Bite Foods Pvt Ltd); Sagar Daryani (CEO, Wow! Momo), Chapter Head, Kolkata; Samir Chopra (Chairman & Founder, CybizCorp (Carls Jr); Sandeep Anand Goyle (Director, Essex Farms (P) Ltd.); Santosh Jindal (Director, Jade Garden Restaurants & Resorts Pvt Ltd); Sharad Batra (MD, Batra Brothers (Cafe Delhi Heights); Thomas Fenn (Partner, Mahabelly); Varun Tuli (Managing Director, Yum Yum Cha); Vyoum Ghai (Director, Royal Eastern Hospitalities (P) Ltd.); Zorawar Kalra (Founder & Managing Director, Massive Restaurants Pvt Ltd)

The new Managing Committee also elected the Office Bearers for the tenure 2019-21. Kabir Suri, Co-Founder & Director of Azure Hospitality and former Delhi Chapter Head, was elected as the Vice President. Under his able leadership, NRAI Delhi Chapter was able to resolve many pressing issues. He owns and manages brands like Mamagoto, Dhaba by Claridges, Speedy Chow, Rollmaal, Mamapaati and Celeste Food Services.

Amit Arora, CEO & Managing Director of Buddy Retail was appointed as the Head of NRAI Gurgaon Chapter. He is the man who has made Buddy Retail what it is today. Having worked in a wide range of areas like IT, Operations, Sales and Marketing, Retail, Financial Services, Investment Banking and Oil Fields; he is equipped with a lot of experience in various capacities. He has previously worked in numerous leadership roles with leading brands like Infosys, J&J, GM, Reliance Retail, Merrill Lynch, and Halliburton.

New Office Bearers of the National Restaurant Association of India:

President: Anurag Katriar (Executive Director & CEO, deGustibus Hospitality)

Vice-President: Kabir Suri (Co-Founder & Director, Azure Hospitality)

Honorary Secretary: Pratik Pota (CEO, Jubilant FoodWorks Ltd (Domino’s)

Honorary Jt. Secretary: Nitin Saluja (CEO, Sunshine Teahouse (Chaayos))

Honorary Treasurer: Manpreet Singh (Director, KS Hotels Pvt Ltd)

Special Invitees: 

Nishit Pandey (Senior Director – Alliances and Corporate Affairs, Hardcastle Restaurants Pvt Ltd)

Rahul Agrawal (President, Barbeque Nation)

Himanshu Mehta (CFO, KFC India)

Karan Tanna (Founder CEO, Yellow Tie Hospitality & Head of NRAI Youth Committee)

Congratulating the new team, Anurag expressed, “NRAI wants to work with the Government and authorities as a cohesive unit to promote the Restaurant Industry. Valued at INR 4,23,865 Crores, our industry is the third largest after retail and insurance in the services segment according to the NRAI India Food Services Report 2019. It generates a direct employment of 7.3 million people, there is a very urgent need that they take note of its socio-economic impact, place it on the high priority sector list and bring in the required reliefs in order to unleash the true potential of this most promising and dynamic sector.”

He announced, “We’ve been successful in many of our endeavors but there’s a long way to go. The new body will persistently take up issues affecting each segment with the relevant authorities Nationally, Locally and Hyper-Locally”.

NRAI’s 37th AGM was attended by Rahul Singh from The Beer Café, Anurag Katriar from deGustibus, Kabir Advani from Berco’s, AD Singh from Olive Bar & Kitchen, Priyank Sukhija from Lord of The Drinks, Riyaaz Amlani from Social, Pratik Pota from Domino’s, Inderjeet Singh Banga from Pirates of Grill, Nitin Saluja from Chaayos, Aditya Ladsaria from Chai Break, Gaurav Karnani from The Grid, Rahul Agrawal from Barbeque Nation, Sharad Batra from Café Delhi Heights along with many other prominent restaurateurs.

The AGM was followed by a grand cocktail reception.