Garcia's: Sector overview
There is evidence to support that pizza dates back to prehistoric times, in its most premature form. Modern pizza as we know it was first prepared in 1889 for Queen Margherita Giovanni, the consort of Umberto I, King of Italy. Tavern owner Don Raffaele Esposito prepared a pizza using tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and basil, ingredients that bore the colour of the Italian flag and named it the Margherita.
In India, the popularity of this Italian pie caught on a century later, when Smokin Joes set up pizza chains across the city. The commodity that was until the early 90s available only in restaurants at unaffordable rates was now available at a lesser price and only a phone call away. Mumbai facilitated the flourishing of these pizza chains because they provided a convenient service, ideal for those leading hectic lifestyles. “While organised retail audit reports on the size of the pizza industry aren’t available, last year we estimate the market in Mumbai to be at 100 to 120 crores last year,” says Dev Amritesh, VP, marketing, Domino’s Pizza India Ltd.
Owing to Mumbai’s penchant for eating out, Anup Jain, marketing director, Pizza Hut, India, attributes 30 per cent of all India business to this city. “According to us the estimated growth in the pizza industry is 40 per cent year on year. Whereas the size of the branded eating out market is estimated at Rs 1000 crore,” says Jain.