Brain Child Of Manvi Chaudhary "Pier 38 –Indo Arabic Kitchen & Cocktail Bar"
It’s said that adversities don’t make a person, they reveal him/her and what challenging times revealed about Manvi Chaudhary, a Gurgaon-based entrepreneur, is that she is an unwavering, composed, and committed professional. Just imagine a 24-year-old girl with dreamy eyes mustering enough courage to venture into the cut-throat competition of F&B world and then immediately finding out that one official ruling has turned the tide against all her business plans. While most will lose hope, Manvi, immediately went back to the drawing board and got cracking. Exactly, a month and four days after the Supreme Court ruling that banned the sale of alcohol within 500 meters of state and national highways, she reopened Pier 38 –Indo Arabic Kitchen & Cocktail Bar, her brainchild and this time, all set to soar.
The recipient of Young Achievers Award at the 6th World Women Leadership Awards is today busy making giant strides. In a male-dominated business, she is standing tall and also giving many ambitious girls like her an opportunity to work collectively to create a space where gastronomes can experience something extraordinary. From offering a lively ambience to a delectable variety of cuisines, the restaurant has created a niche for itself and has gained a reputation of giving its guests, a memorable dining experience.
As a schoolgirl studying at The Shri Ram School, Manvi was an active sportsperson who brought home several medals. She was equally inclined towards fine arts and now has an enviable collection of handmade sculptures from bronze and clay. As she grew up, and pursued Economics and Political Science from the prestigious Miranda House College of Delhi University and later did her Masters from University of Bath, UK pursuing Entrepreneurship & Management, her vision got clearer and she equipped herself with tools to achieve her goals. All she needed now was a little familiarity with the F&B sector and that’s why decided to work for two years after her post-grad. Then came the day when she realized that it was time to take a big step and thus, founded Pier 38. As crazy as it may sound, she was the youngest person and the only woman in the team of 42 members, who set the ball rolling. As they say, the test of fire makes fine steel, Manvi too credits the initial setbacks for the eventual successes. “The difficult times taught me what doing business is truly like. I learnt how to deal with the highs and lows. I began to really respect the profession and passion it demands. The values I learnt during this process guided me in my growth. Now I can say that all those hardships were blessings in disguise.”
Ever since Pier 38 came into existence, she has been following a demanding learning curve. As someone who takes every challenge in her stride, Manvi gradually mastered each skill required to run a restaurant and in retrospect, it's her involvement in minute details that made her venture a roaring success in a short span of time. Even while leading a big team,she looks after the daily finances and keeps strategizing marketing campaigns to take Pier 38 to newer heights. While at work, she entirely immerses herself in different aspects of the restaurant like from menu designing and plating to music and décor. "It’s our responsibility to provide the best food and drinks we possibly can to our valued customers. Personally, I function well if we have a structured system for everything," she says talking about her work style. It was her business acumen that got her to start a new venture in the form of Dips By Jars, which she launched in October last year and she simultaneously has been working on its growth as well.
But all this while, the real struggle has not been to establish a business and make huge profits. The struggle, in fact, has been to do all that without giving up on her values and ethics. “Today, we are heading towards what I first imagined of the brand. The basic philosophy of my brand is to be sensitive to other human beings and the environment. It’s our collective responsibility to do whatever we can to reduce our negative impact on the environment and be conscientious enough to make efforts towards making the human lives around us slightly better. My staff members come from different backgrounds and I constantly try to create more employment opportunities. Similarly, I stress upon using biodegradable materials whenever and wherever we can,” says Manvi, who recently spoke at the BW summit about challenges women face as entrepreneurs.
When not completely immersed in the day-to-day functioning (and excelling at it) of her restaurant, Manvi likes to relax by travelling and exploring new cities and try their local cuisine. She also moonlights as a mixologist and a gin enthusiast. But it’s not her healthy work-life balance or living her dream that really gives Manvi happiness. This multi-faceted woman’s sense of joy lies in seeing people, who visit Pier 38, having a memorable time. Her success is the happy faces of her patrons.