A space to connect minds Jodhpur, India-based The Book Cafe is more than just a place to coffee or books.


A café that serves more than coffee, but stories are brewed. 

The thought of that conversation sets off a spark in my head and I am able to see Richa Sharma an entrepreneur and I begin an exchange.

Richa claims that she was raised in an isolated town and her childhood was filled with struggles and occasion of financial hardships following the death of her father at the age of just one year old. Her mother was the one who raised her, and was an unmarried father, Richa was limited in her surroundings, but not in her mind.

Following her studies in microbiology she chose that she would pursue an MBA and wanted to learn more about the business world. Three hours into the semester she started in Symbiosis, Pune, her mother made her return to her home. As if it could not get any worse the couple got married in the very first academic year following her graduation.

Richa later decided that she would join the husband’s company and begin exploring the world of business on her own. This was a turning point in her life.

I was able to travel across the globe when I was working at an IT firm got to travel to small towns and cities, and see the business world with my own eyes the woman says.

It was during these journeys that she came across something that would later go into becoming the foundation of her business.

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This period of traveling around the world made me understand why it’s claimed that people from small towns lack that appeal or the mentality of growth. My mother took me back to Symbiosis, Pune, because she was anxious, which is typical of those from Tier III cities, she says.

A bibliophile with a love for excellent coffee, in the year 2017 she opened The Book Cafe(TBC) in Jodhpur.

This is not your typical cafe

Coffee and books are the mainstays the operation of the Book Cafe, they aren’t the only thing this venture is about.

More than a place for people to sit and read books over a nice cuppa, The Book Cafe is a community-building space that hosts networking events, talks, interactions and just general rendezvous for youths, women entrepreneurs, businessmen and women, writers, poets, stand-up comedians, bloggers, YouTubers, photographers–basically anyone who has something interesting to say.

The aim is to make people talk about topics that interest them, and expose them to the latest subcultures and cultures and all of this within the educational environment that is a book cafe. This can be done by hosting book launches, art shows, educational workshops and product showcases, etc., Richa says.

Coffee is also a great draw for the business.

Cafes in smaller cities or towns typically offer basic or at best, a little premium coffee , because they don’t believe that the people living there would be interested in a coffee that is craft. However, this is a completely false notion, according to the founder.

Book Cafe Book Cafe not only offers specialty espressos but it also offers specialty brews made with manual brewing methods, such as aeropresses, syphons pour-overs and nitro brews that the other co-founder of the business and coffee enthusiast, Faaez Mohammed, personally supervises.

Future plans and the business model

A successful startup, TBC makes its revenue through sales of food and drinks in addition to the events it holds.

Richa claims she’s talking to venture capitalists in order to raise additional money.

Presently, located in Jodhpur with two franchise stores and a flagship store TBC plans to expand to Tier I and III cities such as Udaipur, Pali, Surat, Vadodara, and Ahmedabad following, and then further expand the presence of TBC in Bharat.

The cafe is rated 4.3 ratings out of five on Google. The cafe’s competitors include other cafes that are artisanal, such as Blue Tokai and Third Wave Coffee that also feature a community-oriented aspect to them. They are also present or expanding into other cities.

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The range of offerings ranges from D2C cafes to specialty, artisanal cafés and specialty cafes, the Indian marketplace for coffee has expanded significantly over the past five years. Estimated at $1.46 billion in 2021 the Indian specialty coffee market — the 10th fastest-growing globally–is projected to grow to $2.03 billion by 2025, according an Mordor Intelligence report.


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