Secret sauce

Capital Foods is aspiring to play a bigger role in the organised FMCG arena with its soup and noodle brands

Photographs by Soumik Kar

God was running this business for five years,” Ajay Gupta declares after a moment’s startled pause on being asked who was running Capital Foods before he took over in 2000. It’s a question the 47-year-old adman-turned-entrepreneur should have expected. He started the Mumbai-based company in 1996 with ₹2.5 crore from investor-friends but didn’t take over as managing director until 2000, by when the lack of owner involvement had left its mark: investors started backing out, revenue was just ₹3 crore, there were no clear financial statements to show where resources were allocated and no marketing and distribution strategies were in place for the company. “The company’s really started from 2001,” says Gupta.