Bala Sarda founded Vahdam Teas in New Delhi in 2015 to make the Indian tea brand positioning stronger in the global market. With a total of 175 SKUs, the company clocked Rs 145 crore turnover this fiscal year. In recent years, India’s Darjeeling tea has made a name for itself in the global market, with UK brand Twinings Tea and Starbucks subsidiary Teavana boasting of the Indian flavour to their customers. Although Indian teas are in wide demand, Bala Sarda felt that India as a brand is not efficiently placed in foreign markets. “There are foreign brands that are sourcing tea from India, and the consumers abroad love the taste. However, I didn’t find the ‘Made in India’ tag as the selling point there. The perception is if an Indian brand is selling the same product, it wouldn’t be of good quality.” He adds After graduating from college, Bala visited his family tea estates in Darjeeling and realized the massive potential Indian tea had and the value it could create within the global tea industry. In 2015, at the age of 23, Bala founded Vahdam Teas — a digitally native, vertically integrated global wellness brand — that ships one of India’s finest teas to the world. After passing the USDA certification and non-GMO verification, Bala launched in the US market. He later explored Canada, the UK, and Germany as potential markets. Vahdam is now available in 1,000 brick and mortar shops in the US. It is one of the first few Indian brands to list in premium and legacy retail chains in the US. Bala says Vahdam has close to 1.5 million US customers. In five years, Vahdam Teas has raised over Rs 110 crore in venture funding in four rounds. The company is also supporting the Indian tea community by directing one percent of its revenue towards the education of the tea growers’ children under its social initiative ‘TEAch Me’, in partnership with edtech unicorn BYJU’s. In the years to come, the brand plans to launch innovative and new products and become a mainstream brand.
State : Haryana
Gender : Male
Sector : Agriculture & Forestry