10th November 2023
Indian street food brand Mowgli intends to open up to five sites annually. Mowgli chief exec Nisha Katona gave up her career as a barrister to establish the first Mowgli in Liverpool’s in 2014. Serving fresh, home cooked-style Indian food, the brand now has 19 sites across the UK. Katona said that 2023 has been one of “two halves” and that the cost-of-living crisis “really had an impact”.
“We ticked over but definitely saw a different pattern in trade, where people were only going out on weekends, then, interestingly, it got to late summer and people seemed to realise that the reason we live and work is so that we can go and spend time with our loved ones, and the place we do that in is a restaurant. People took to the streets and supported local businesses, and that was really encouraging – then we traded our socks off,” she said.
Mowgli has seen strong demand in recent times, turning over £26.8m in the year ended 31 July 2022 and returning to profit following a drop-off on the back of the covid-19 pandemic. As a result, new venues are lined up for Bristol, Bury St Edmunds, Chelmsford and Knutsford, with Katona also considering sites in Lincoln and Newcastle.
“I do intend to build about four or five a year,” she said, with the concept which will “always have the type of service that “makes you feel like you are in your nan’s living room”.
With global expansion on the cards, and Katona has considered sites in New York, Amsterdam and Dublin.