V. G. Siddhartha
||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (May 2014)|
|V. G. Siddhartha|
|Born||Chikkamagaluru, Karnataka, India|
|Residence||Bangalore, Karnataka, India|
|Alma mater||Mangalore University|
|Occupation||Chairman of Amalgamated Bean Coffee Trading Company Ltd (ABCTCL)|
Siddhartha (now known V. G. Siddhartha) obtained a Masters degree in economics from Mangalore University, Karnataka. He married the daughter of S. M. Krishna, the former Chief Minister of Karnataka, Indian Minister for External Affairs and Governor of Maharashtra.
After doing his Masters he joined J M Financial Services (now J M Morgan Stanley) in Mumbai as a management trainee/intern in trading on the Indian Stock Market under Mr. Mahendra Kampani. After two years with J M Financial Services, when Siddhartha returned to Bangalore, his father gave him money to start a business of his choice. Siddhartha bought a stock market card for Rs 30,000, along with a company called Sivan Securities, which was renamed in 2000 as Way2wealth Securities Ltd with vision to set "new standards in the retail financial services in India". Its venture capital division came to be known as Global Technology Ventures (GTV) as well as a site in the city in 1984 and turned it into a highly successful investment banking and stock broking company.
Almost 15 years later, Siddhartha established a successful coffee business in Karnataka. He grows coffee in Chikmagalur and exports about 28,000 tonnes of coffee annually and sells another 2,000 tonnes locally for about Rs 350 million each year. His coffee growing and trading company, Amalgamated Bean Company (ABC), has an annual turnover of Rs 25 billion. Siddhartha now has 200 exclusive retail outlets selling his brand of Coffee Day powder all over South India. ABC is India's largest exporter of green coffee.
He owns 12,000 acres (4047 ha) of coffee plantations.
He started his coffee trading company ABC in 1993, with a Rs 60 million turnover. His company grew gradually. He bought an ailing coffee curing unit in Hassan for Rs 40 million and turned it around. Now, his company has a curing capacity of 75,000 tonnes, which is the largest in the country.
He was the first entrepreneur in Karnataka to set up a cyber café in 1996 (Café Coffee Day, a chain of youth hangout coffee parlors). Now, he has 1,407 Coffee Day Cafes in India. Siddhartha also hopes to win the contract to take his chain to all the airports of Karnataka and then to the rest of the country. His cyber cafes attract at least 40,000 to 50,000 visitors a week.
Siddhartha was awarded the Entrepreneur of the year title in 2003 by The Economic Times for "crafting a successful pan Indian brand for a commodity business and giving Indian consumers a new lifestyle experience that is within reach of the common man".
Amalgamated Bean Coffee Trading Company Ltd. today is the largest exporter of green coffee from India and perhaps one of the two fully integrated coffee companies of Asia, involved in all sectors of coffee from plantations to retailing to exports. Coffee Day Group today is the only fully integrated and the largest coffee conglomerate in India and is credited with creating the "coffee revolution" in India - acknowledged by the Coffee Board of India Amalgamated Bean Coffee Trading Company Ltd.. From a handful of cafés in six cites in the first five years, Café Coffee Day has become India's largest and premier retail chain of cafes with 1,438 cafes in 135 cities.
Siddhartha also founded Global Technology Ventures Ltd. in 2000, a company that identifies, invests and mentors Indian companies engaged in cutting edge technologies. Currently,[when?] he also holds board seats in GTV, Mindtree, Liqwid Krystal, Way2Wealth and Ittiam. GTV has now set up a global technology village on a 59-acre (240,000 m2)technology incubator park in Bangalore, which will provide office space, communication links, recreational facilities and even a commercial centre. GTV was valued by BankAm at $100 million last year,[when?] and is expected to have doubled its valuation this year.[when?] It is poised to grow on the lines of Softbank of Japan.
He has planted banana trees on 3,000 acres (1,214 ha) and plans to export bananas.
He owns a furniture company called The Dark Forest Furniture Company, named after Kathale Kahn Estate, his estate in Chickamagalur, which is venturing into furniture by building a 600,000 square feet (56,000 m2) factory in Chikmagalur, Karnataka, which will use timber from his coffee plantations in India and a rainforest in Guyana. It initially plans to supply furniture to Cafe Coffee Day outlets. However, the construction of the facility is yet to begin.