Bipinbhai Hadvani: The Journey from Humble Beginnings to “Gopal” Snacks Empire

"Jo Hum Khana Pasand Karein Wohi Dusron Ko Khilana Hai" is a widely recognized tagline of the Gopal Namkeen brand, which has achieved immense popularity in India, especially in the North. However, the brand's journey was not as smooth as it seems today. The founder encountered numerous challenges and setbacks on his path to success.

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Who is Bipinbhai Vitthal Hadvani?

Bipinbhai Vitthal Hadvani is the Founder and Managing Director of Gopal Snacks. He has over 30 years of experience in the industry. He is known for maintaining quality, affordability, and accessibility in his brand Gopal Snacks. The company reached more than 4 lakh retailers under his leadership. His brand Gopal Snacks is the second biggest player in Gujarat after Balaji Brand. 

He says "Jyada paisa Kamana hai to daam nahin business badhao" (If you want to earn more money then the make bigger the business, and not the price) which he learnt from his father.

Early Life and Business 

Bipin Bhai was born and brought up in Gujarat. His family used to live in Gujarat's Bhadra village in the 1980s. Bipinbhai’s father sold homemade Gujarati snacks. He also used to help his father after school. He sold ‘Chavanu’ (Gujarati snack) for Rs 1 per packet in villages nearby on his cycle. His father's business was doing well to run a family but was limited to only Bhadra's people. He wanted to do something big and different, so he tried his hands in a big city.

First Venture

In 1990, he borrowed Rs 4,200 from his father and came to Rajkot after completing his schooling. He came here to explore more opportunities and to sell Namkeen or do something different. With an investment of Rs 8500, he started a business named ‘Ganesh Namkeen’ in partnership with one of his relatives. In the starting, they set manufacturing unit in a residential set-up. They used to sell Soy, Ganthia, Daldmuth, Chana dal, and peas packets.

Although he had hopes with the Company, it did not perform well. He wanted to take the Company to new heights but he did not find a suitable investor in his business. At the same time, he also faced differences with his relatives, and in the end, the Ganesh brand closed down.

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Second Venture (Gopal Namkeen)

After failing in his first venture, Bipin Bhai wanted to give himself another chance. He staked out his share in Ganesh for Rs 2.5 lakhs and started a new venture with his wife Daxaben in the same year. 

It was in 1994 when he opened up a shop with the name of ‘Gopal Namkeen’ in Rajkot. His idea was simple - from starting "Sell customers what you would eat" which he learned from his father.

But it was way harder to build brand loyalty for a new brand, so he picked up his cycle again to roam in Rajkot, while Daxa managed the production from home. He started engagements with shopkeepers and dealers to gauge the demand for various products and subsequently ramped up in-house production.

Gathiya's popularity benefited him. He achieved sales of Rs. 1 crore. However, despite these efforts, setbacks ensued once more, although he managed. After 6 years of starting, his brother also joined his venture. This encouraged Bipinbhai to expand his business. In 2003, he decided to set up a manufacturing unit. He used an automatic frying machine that helped him increase his production capacity.

In 2007 he renamed the brand from "Gopal Gruh Udyod to Gopal Snacks Private Limited".

After attaining the desired success in his business Gopal Namkeen, Bipinbhai made a strategic decision to enhance the Company's capabilities. In 2014, he established an in-house printing unit to manufacture his brand's Namkeen packets. Moreover, recognizing the importance of quality control and uniqueness, he also ventured into manufacturing the masalas used in the preparation of the Namkeen. Major firms entering the traditional Namkeen area competed with Hadvani due to the growing chips industry. In response, he expanded the brand's offering to include new items like chips, wafers and spices. This shows that the Company changed itself with time. These days, chips account for around 7% of Gopal's sales, mostly in Gujarat. As a result, Gopal Namkeen fortified its position in the market, standing as a symbol of innovation and quality.

Bipinbhai Hadvani's Net Worth and Gopal Brand

His brand “Gopal Snacks Limited” has become a company of around Rs 1400 crore. With seven facilities spread over three states, their product line today includes over 60 different snacks, and they are well-known in more than 70 nations. The Company claims to make 1 crore packs a day. It has a huge network of over 750 dealers and approximately seven lakh retailers.

Today, the brand is well-established in the Indian market due to Bipin Bhai's innovative business strategy. He turned the brand into India's largest producer of snack pellets and gathiya. His life gives us a lesson of success.

Sources

https://yourstory.com/2023/08/gopal-snacks-bipin-hadvani-success-story

https://www.linkedin.com/posts/thefaadguy_startups-casestudy-india-activity-7168827463689531392-EMkK/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=member_android

https://www.forbesindia.com/article/regional-goliaths/from-mere-rs-4500-to-rs-1300-crore-how-bipin-hadvani-built-gopal-snacks/80253/1

https://yourstory.com/2023/08/gopal-snacks-bipin-hadvani-success-story

https://hindi.news18.com/news/business/success-story-how-bipinbhai-viitalbhai-hadvani-turns-gopal-namkeen-to-a-1300-crore-company-from-selling-homemade-gujarati-snacks-on-cycle-8122355.html

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