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Views and Interviews

June 2022

Lalit Roy on B2B events
for the hospitality industry

Lalit Roy is the Founder Director of Raj & Roy Agencies – a consultancy that sources and integrates kitchen equipment and restaurant accessories for 5-star kitchens, restaurant chains, and individual theme restaurants. According to Lalit, sourcing for the hospitality world calls for travel outreach to get the best value and pricing for customers – and this can get complex when you’re dealing with hundreds of products, across individual service areas and unique verticals.

In this feature story we talk to him about the benefits of a trade event for hospitality professionals. We also cover the recent event organized by Incredible Fairs and Media under their World Of Hospitality banner. The event was held in Bengaluru on June 8, 9, 10 – 2022, and has been described as South India’s most comprehensive B2B food, drink and hospitality expo.

Here’s our first question to Lalit Roy.

Lalit, as a participant, could you give us some highlights of this B2B event?

The highlights of the event as described by the organizers included a showcase experience for 200+ exhibitors, 8000+ HoReCa trade professionals, 200+ hosted buyers, and 600+ leading brands.  Event activities included knowledge seminars and special events, a competition for chefs, panel discussions, networking opportunities, and a focused pavilion for food, beverages and hospitality equipment.

The industry categories were wide and varied, though the core alignment was with the hospitality industry. From the promotional material shared by the organizers, I observed that there were 36 stall categories. Right from commercial kitchen & refrigeration equipment, chilling & freezing, coffee & beverages, to hospitality technology, communications and entertainment. The listing also includes furniture and furnishings, housekeeping, tableware, crockery, table accessories, and more.

Does this event provide a unified platform for B2B sourcing partners?

According to the event organizers, World of Hospitality aims at becoming the most comprehensive product showcase, covering the gamut of food service & hospitality equipment, tableware, interiors & design, housekeeping, and hospitality technology on a single platform.

These industry level B2B events address the everyday needs of hospitality professionals, food & beverage professionals and freelance chefs in the industry. This year, the organizers introduced an “I Love Food” platform that put the spotlight on unique offerings in food ingredients, ready-to-eat specialties, bakery essentials, flavours, savouries, and more.

For our readers, could you give us a broad idea of visitor profiles?

Here again, the profile outline shared by the organizers includes hoteliers, restaurateurs, executive chefs, distributors, importers, e-commerce buyers, baristas & cafes, bakers, cash-n-carry, ice cream parlor owners, airline, cruise and rail travel caterers.

The listing also includes F&B professionals, CEOs, general managers, executive housekeepers, purchase managers, professionals associations, cruise managers, project consultants, architects, kitchen consultants and system integrators.

Finally, Lalit, what were your own personal takeaways at this event?

For me personally, and my principal associates Mittal International, this event was a very useful meeting ground for professionals from the hotel and retail food chains of South India. Our interactions with visitors to our stall gave us the opportunity to showcase new products across a wide range of equipment categories for corporate and retail kitchens.

Our participation at the event also gave us the opportunity to make observations about current practices, usage trends, and need gaps as outlined by professionals. Their feedback gave us an idea of what they were looking for in terms of convenience, reliability and appliance efficiency.

Saving time was another aspect that was being stressed upon by these professionals. They also seemed to be concerned about energy consumption and overall return on investment – understandable, after a long-drawn pandemic.

Finally, topping the attractions at the Mittal International stall were our live demo sessions - handled by our senior chef and product expert. He actually handed out pizza and croissant portions to visitors for sampling and feedback. 

Sometimes, it helps to go the extra mile to get closer to the customer.

Lalit Roy

Stall at WOH expo in the name of Mittal International
Lalit Roy on Twitter

Images courtesy of Lalit Roy

Content Disclaimer: The views expressed in our interviews and stories do not necessarily reflect the official policies, practices and guidelines of the All India Resort Development Association, or its members. These views are based on personal experiences, private opinion, or open source information. (Images used here are either "paid-for" stock photos, images shared by the people we interview, or images under one of the open source licenses such as Creative Commons and others.)

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