ID Fresh, a place where you can get those delicious south Indian cuisine. But, did you know about the founder of this food company?
PC Musthafa, son of a daily wage earner, was born and brought up in Chennelode, a village in Wayanad district of Kerala. The place neither had electricity nor road. His father was a coolie and his mother never went to school.
Today, PC Musthafa is the CEO and Founder of a Bengaluru-based food company known as ‘ID FRESH’. The company operates in different cities of the country and even in Dubai.
Coming from a family whose father earned a meagre income, Musthafa had a taugh childhood. He would always help his father at work during the weekends and holidays.
He also failed in class 6, and it was then that his father wanted him to quit school in order to assist him for full time work. But his teacher, Sir Mathew requested his father to give him a second chance. Musthafa was an average student who was good in math but weak in both English and Hindi. Mathew, however, helped him by taking extra classes after school and Musthafa went on achieving good grades in class 7 and so on.
College… Struggle and Success
After topping his school in class 10, Musthafa enrolled himself in Farooq College in Kozhikode (Calicut) for his pre university course. When he found it difficult to pay his tuition and hostel fees, a friend of his father arranged for free meals at the hostel.
Later, he appeared for the engineering entrance exam and secured 63rd rank in the state. This got him an admission at Regional Engineering College (now National Institute of Technology) in Computer Science, the subject he liked most.
Musthafa completed his engineering courses in 1995.
Paying his father’s debt
In 1995, after his studies, Musthafa got placed at a start-up in Bengaluru for a salary of around Rs 6,000 per month. Two months later he got a job at Motorola with a salary of Rs 15,000. The company sent him to Ireland, where he worked for a year and a half. From Motorola he shifted to Citibank, Dubai, where his salary had crossed Rs 1 lakh.
Musthafa had sent his first salary to his father in order to clear his debt. His father could not believe that the one-month-salary of his son can pay his lifetime loan.
He also constructed a house for his parents out of the money he had earned from working in Dubai.
Musthafa then got married in 2000 and has three sons till now.
Returning from Dubai
Musthafa returned to Bengaluru in 2003 after spending seven years in the Middle East with a saving of Rs 15 lakh and decided to do an MBA. He enrolled himself for an MBA at IIM.
When he was studying MBA, he would always spend time with his cousin at Nazer’s kirana shop in Thiappasandra. And one day, his cousin Shamsudeen came with the idea of starting an idly or dosa batter business after seeing a dosa batter being sold in plastic bags in nearby stores and Musthafa plunged into it.
They both decided to give it a try and Musthafa invested Rs 25,000.
Journey of ID Fresh Food
In the beginning, they supplied batter to 20 stores in Bengaluru under the brand name ‘ID’ (Idli & Dosa). They made use of two grinders, a mixer and a sealing machine.
They started earning profit from the day they started. from 550 square feet space, they moved to a bigger one of 800 square feet. In two years, the company made 3,500 kg of batter daily and the number of stores they partnered with also increased to around 300.
Musthafa got his MBA in 2007 and officially joined as the CEO in charge of marketing and finance of iD Fresh. In 2008, he invested 40 lakh and bought a 2,500 square feet shed in the Hoskote Industrial Area. In 2009, he also sold his property in Kerala that he bought when he was working in Dubai in order to expand his business with a the amount of 30 lakh rupees.
In 2013, ID Fresh started their operation in Dubai. And in the first round of funding from Helion Venture Partners, they managed to raise 35 crore rupees. In the second round of funding from Premjilnvest, they raised 150 crore rupees. The company also plans to operate in the US, UK and Singapore.
ID Fresh products are sold in 16,000 stores across seven cities. Their main unit in Bengaluru currently operates in a 15,000 square feet space.
The company is also coming up with a world class manufacturing plant on a sprawling 75,000 square feet space near Hoskote in a year’s time.
PC Musthafa had encountered many obstacles in his life. There is nothing that can stop his road to success. From being a poor boy who failed in class six, to a successful entrepreneur he is today.