From times immemorial, coffee table conversations were always animated, charged up yet promising at times. Right from the Victorian era where coffee houses were the birthplace of renaissance, till today, they remain as the preferred destination of chirpy banters. Though they are more popularly known as cafés nowadays, they still remain the ideal spots for meetings, both official and casual. The saying, a lot can happen over coffee and conversation may be cliché but it is so very true. For the new age technology entrepreneurs, this has actually become a way of life. Dialogues Café in the heart of Koramangala, Bangalore boasts of a welcoming ambience that might just be what you need. It is a cafe, workspace, a library of sorts, all capsuled into one – a ‘social club’ perhaps designed for dreamers!
Literally, time is money in Dialogues Café. You just have to pay only for the time spent there – they charge INR 190 for an hour, followed by INR 3 per minute. Open from 10am – 10pm, this is a perfect place to unwind or just enjoy a lazy day or work couple of hours outside the boring cubicle. You can have unlimited snacks, enjoy free wifi, grab a coffee, and even relax with your favourite book in the comfy bean bag – Be what you wanna be, taking things the way they come…
You can even order food from outside, or bring you own tiffin. Dialogues Café has a reading room, conference room, smokers’ corner, open air lower deck, and café area – you are spoiled for choice, really.
The Trio behind Dialogues Café
There are three minds behind the startup.
- Ankit Gupta (B.Tech from ISM Dhanbad and MBA from HEC Paris, worked with Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton, Australia)
- Saurabh Priya ( B.E. from R V College of Engineering, Bangalore and MBA from HEC Paris, worked with Sapient & Cisco)
- Udai Kiran ( MBA Marketing from UPTU, worked with India Today Group and Times of India Group)
As Ankit said, “How three people who are completely different (one techie, one sales and one finance guy) decided to be together is itself a story.” At an initial investment of Rs 25 lakh from their personal savings, they opened the café with no marketing campaign whatsoever except in social media.
The Café is Unique in itself
Dialogues Café was born out of Ankit Gupta’s (Co-founder) idea of a workplace. As he said, “We wanted to build an ideal place for dreamers in midst of a bustling city. We were very committed to our idea. Our concept, idea and the team camaraderie kept us going.”
Ankit further added, “We don’t have any direct customers but people tend to compare us with the co-working spaces. We don’t consider them competition because we don’t provide boring cubicles to dynamic and energetic entrepreneurs.”
Such a unique concept of a startup has seen the face of success quite early. Just a month into inception, the café has hosted 3 events already with big brands like Uber, Toastmasters. They had 100+ customers and the media has also said positive words about the startup.
The startup had its share of black swan moments as well. The construction of the café tested their patience along with handling difficult vendors. But as Ankit said, “But somehow people were benevolent and we could meet our opening deadline of 22nd May.”
But at the end of the day, that is what matters, isn’t it?!
While the scalability of Dialogues Café model has to be witnessed by time itself, for now, Bangalore is basking in the glory of yet another refreshingly new concept. Meanwhile, for the talented Bangaloreans waiting for their time to be bitten by the entrepreneurial bug, Ankit has a splendid advise, “Just don’t become an entrepreneur because everyone is becoming one. Have an idea, be firm, don’t dilute your offerings for a short term gain and focus on basics.”