Published: 18th April 2018
Wai Wai whammy: Nepali dry-noodle brand to set up 500 noodle bars in India and we're psyched
Wai Wai is already present in 35 countries, and they also plan to open outlets of its quick service restaurant Wai Wai City Noodle Bar in some of the existing markets
Great news for Wai Wai fans! Nepal's CG Corp Global, makers of the popular Wai Wai noodles, on Wednesday said it plans to have 500 outlets of its quick service restaurant (QSR) Wai Wai City Noodle Bar in India by 2020-end. The company currently has 30 outlets operational in the country. "CG Corp Global is expecting revenue of Rs 1,000 crore from Wai Wai City by the end of 2025," Wai Wai City managing director Varun Chaudhary said. "We are confident with the team we have, we will be able to really move this into the largest Asian noodle brand, which will go global," he added. The firm will be investing Rs 250 crore in total for the expansion and has already invested Rs 50 crore so far, according to Chaudhary.
Why are we so wow-ed out over the Wai Wai news? Because you almost never get a pack unless someone comes back from Nepal, Tibet, Sikkim or thereabouts...till now!
“I was introduced to Wai Wai noodles way back in 2007 when I was still in school. A classmate had brought it for lunch and at that time I remember being enthralled by this new noodle brand because you can eat it in many ways, which was pretty unlike Maggi, the only instant noodles we were familiar with. I asked my friend what it was and where he got it from,” said Bidushi Das, a young professional from Delhi. “Back in those days, it was really difficult to actually find a shop that sold the noodles, and it is still difficult today and is found in select departmental stores across the city,” Bidushi also said. “It’s a great initiative by the company that they are making it more available to the masses by opening more outlets,” she added.
Pritha Paul from Kolkata also agreed saying: “I was introduced to Wai Wai when I was in class 8 or 9, as it was not readily available or a lesser known variation of instant noodles. However, after having other variants for decades I remember how different it was from the ones I had already tasted. I still like it and it would be great to have more stores in the city and around the country.”
However, Archana, a resident from Chennai, had a different opinion and she said: “I do like it, but not one of those who declare their love for it. They are not readily available anywhere, except for a few hilly states in the North and it is more popular there,” she added.
The QSR chain, which is taking the franchise route and has 27 master franchisees, will have outlets coming up at airports, railway stations, and metro stations, among others. Wai Wai is present in 35 countries and plans to take the QSR concept in some of these existing markets. "We definitely are looking at the Middle East, the US and Europe. We have our plants coming up in Bangladesh, Egypt, Serbia. Our global expansion will really start taking once our India operations stabilize," said Chaudhary. He added that the QSR business would complement its FMCG business, where Wai Wai noodles do a business of Rs 600 crore, and has a market share of 27 percent in the estimated Rs 2,400 crore instant noodle markets.