AIBTF is proud to have one of the most successful Indian Australians – Bipen Sharma – as one of our patrons. Every one from the Indian sub continent is familiar with the brand Sharma’s Kitchen – a pioneer in the Indian dairy products industry. Bipen Sharma’s journey as an entrepreneur is closely linked to his brand Sharma’s Kitchen.
There was a time when you couldn’t find any Indian dairy products such as Yoghurt, Paneer on the shelves in Australia. Indians would crave for the home made taste of such products. Old timers would remember buying Greek yoghurt and even trying out Feta cheese. All that was changed by one man’s vision.
Where others saw challenges, Bipen Sharma saw an opportunity. The journey wasn’t easy, milk available locally isn’t ideal to make home style Dahi and Paneer. But persistence and unflinching commitment to quality led to the launch of the first ever Indian style yoghurt in Australia in 1998 under the name Sharma’s Kitchen.
Today, Sharma’s Kitchen is an undisputed leader in the market selling Indian style Yoghurt, Paneer, Ghee, Mango Lassi, Badam Milk, Kesar Milk,Khajoor Milk, Shrikhand, Khoya and a range of Sweets as well. Sharma’s Kitchen products have been welcomed by the Indian and subcontinent diaspora in Australia and can be found on the shelves of every Indian store all over the country.
Bipen Sharma is a man driven by excellence and continuous improvement who started his innings in 1980 in Melbourne and has owned 3 restaurants before setting up Sharma’s Kitchen. Under Mr Sharma’s management, the company follows the policy of continuous improvement, regularly investing in R&D to improve product quality.
The rewards of this approach have been truly remarkable. Over the years, their products have won Gold & Silver medals in both state and national level competitions in Australia, competing with mainstream brands – the only Indian brand to achieve this feat consistently.
Two of Sharma's Kitchen products were adjudged the ‘best of the best’ by two of the most prestigious organisations in the country. Mango Lassi by Sharma’s Kitchen won the Grand Champion Award by the Dairy Industry Association of Australia – beating all other Gold Medal winning products in its category. This was followed by the Milk Badam winning the Champions Trophy by Royal Agricultural Society, once again scoring over other Gold Medal winners in its category.
While the business has flourished, Bipen Sharma’s achievements and contribution have been just as much on the community front too. Bipen actively supports several charities – both financially as well in terms of complimentary supply of products for various events and occasions. Thanks to his efforts to promote Indian culture in Australia, in 1993, the Sydney Morning Herald carried a front page story on Diwali for the first time ever. Sharma’s Kitchen has also donated a van to Sri Om Care – a charity organisation providing care services for the elderly in Sydney.
With nearly 40 years of hard work and achievements, the future still holds a lot of promise for Bipen Sharma. He says, “We will try our best to continue our journey of growth in new markets which could include US, Middle East and even the subcontinent. With many more products being tested and new concepts being developed, we will continue to endeavour giving top quality Indian dairy products to our customers. We may be expanding internationally, but what we are really doing is get closer and closer to India,."
Australia India Business & Trade Foundation (AIBTF) will be organising a series of events aimed to bring together talent and resources from Australia and India, both onshore and offshore.