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The Dabbawalas of Hyderabad -strategy

They do it for survival, but can we apply it in our businesses?

When there is huge competition in market and you are low on resources,

would you go all in to fight the leaders


find gaps in the market?

Here is how the dabbawalas do it. if you are from Hyderabad you must have seen them on the busy corners, near offices, colleges and flea markets. Mostly present during odd hours like 5am -9 am, 9pm until 1 am ...

yes thats the Gap they are able to find , and fill it with their

1) when most hotels/tiffin centers are closed they fulfil the demand

2) they go where the customers are

3) offer variety of options (idly, wada,bonda,uttapa..)

4) at lower price (compared to restaurants)

5) convinient to the customers

6) mostly friendly and cordial (so people like them)

7) consistently available at same place at same time (helps retain customers)

8) taste almost good (not great but since the expectations are low, and there is no other choice..)

Business wise, they operate at least cost,

1) cooked at their home kitchen (so no need to pay rent, no new setup fot kitchen )

2) one vehicle carries it all and mostly they already have a vehicle (luna, or a bike)

3) no tax to pay, no license fee

4) since its mostly one man army thing, or at most 2 people, no salaries to pay except for themselves

Personally i never liked them as i think they do not have proper license, create mess on roads, hygene issues,etc , nevertheless

they have their own fan following


are serving a need that would otherwise go unfulfilled.

They do it for survival in the city, but aren't the businesses all about survival?

Survival of the fittest or the one who finds gaps? what do you think?

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