In T&T: Rituals planning 50 India shops

20 January 2012


Local coffee house Rituals is planning to open 50 outlets in India over the next five years.

“We are negotiating a joint venture with an Indian group to enter the Indian market in New Delhi and Mumbai. We hope to have the first three stores opened before the end of 2012,” said Rituals founder and chairman of the Pizza Boys group Mario Sabga-Aboud on Wednesday.

“We are very excited about going to India because of the huge market and growth potential there. There will also not be a language barrier to affect how we do business,” he added.

Sabga-Aboud was the feature speaker at the 3rd Biennial Small and Medium Enterprise Conference, hosted by the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Commerce at the Hilton Trinidad.

He said in addition to India, there were also plans to expand the brand into Nigeria, Guatemala, El Salvador and the United Arab Emirates.

He said the group will open one store in Guatemala later this year, and is in discussions with a Nigerian businessman to look at that country as a potential market.

He said that while Nigeria was a nontraditional market, the country was progressive, and in the capital alone, there were more than six million people who were very in tune to modern trends, like coffee houses.

Sabga-Aboud began the Rituals brand eight years ago, and gave the conference the anecdote of how he came up with the name.

“My wife asked what coffee meant to me, and I said it was a ritual. I haven’t looked back since,” he said.

Since then, the coffee house has become well established in Trinidad and Tobago and the wider Caribbean. There are 48 stores in Trinidad and Tobago, with plans to open a further ten to 15 this year.

There are also 100 Rituals stores throughout the Caribbean, from as far south as Suriname and Guyana, to Jamaica.

Rituals serves more than three million people every month, Sabga-Aboud said.

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