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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Shilpa Shetty's food firm loses steam

Shilpa Shetty's international food company is in the doldrums. The group managing the business has filed for bankruptcy.

In August 2009, the actress and husband Raj Kundra announced a 33 per cent stake in the company. The couple invested close to 6 million pounds and had plans of opening casual dining and shopping mall dining formats in Dubai and Jordan next year. The actress-entrepreneur had expressed her intent of packaging and serving authentic gourmet meals, chutneys and pickles.

A source from London notes, "The group that runs her take away and restaurant business was already rescued once after going through a financial crisis. When she invested a huge sum in the group, the prospects seemed brighter. For the past two years however, things haven't looked so rosy. Apart from not-so-positive reviews from the press (Giles Coren is horrified at the changed menu at curry chain Bombay Bicycle Club after it was taken over by Bollywood celebrity Shilpa Shetty – www.thetimes.co.uk), the establishment has also had to deal with monetary issues like debts and loan approvals." The local press reports that the organisation has 264 employees working across 17 stores and takeaway sites, serving modern Indian cuisine. Their future is now uncertain.

Shilpa, who is in London, says, I exited the company in December 2010, so it does not affect me. I am working on something bigger and better.

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