Prash Theva has been a transformational force behind Tigerbay International’s success and growth in the last ten years. He has been able to use a leadership style that compliments Shane Vekaria, Co-CEO of Tigerbay International, to build a core purpose with the business that has adapted to changes in customer demands and the economic environment the world has been facing.
Prash’s leadership is complemented by the team working alongside him daily. To deliver excellent products and services, Prash, alongside Shane, relies on insight and feedback from their management while keeping a constant view of the external environment that impacts Tigerbay International. From exhibitions and conferences, learning about new products to networking with a range of other CEOs across the different industries, has allowed Prash to make logical and thoughtful decisions on the direction and growth of Tigerbay International.
There is a balance of meeting the strategic business needs, being resilient in the daily challenges of an international business, and being empathetic to the employees and customers of Tigerbay International.
Over the last ten years, he has been adaptable both within his own business and the industry around him, taking on ideas from his leadership team to adapt to new ways of working, especially when coming out of the Covid-19 pandemic. That leadership style has also meant sharing the big picture plan with his teams to keep them motivated in achieving goals. Moreover, friendships have turned into business relationships. Today they work with the best international shisha brands and elite spirit brands, Prash believes supporting and showing loyalty to his own from the very beginning is key and this has been shown in the success of Savacco London today, where they are dominating the UK Shisha Market and growing rapidly internationally.
Prash has now gone into real estate and development with the support of his younger brother, who owns Mez Construction UK Limited. With the help of their Construction & Interior Design Team, he has been able to successfully expand his knowledge and portfolio into other areas that have always been of interest to him.
Mentoring & Leadership
While being successful with the growth of Tigerbay International, one of the critical parts of Prash’s mantras is “growth comes from give and take.” With this, he has been a mentor and coach to aspiring, new, and existing entrepreneurs.
As a mentor to new entrepreneurs, he has been able to share the direction and challenges in creating a new business on an international platform while sharing the lessons learned (and still being learned) so other entrepreneurs can anticipate and learn from these. Prash never likes to see others fail and so he supports many new entrepreneurs, from various in dustries, by providing guidance and allowing them, in some ways, to use the business model he has developed as a blueprint for their new ventures. He has formed relationships with entrepreneurs during the launch and growth of their businesses, so much so that Prash’s core team will help with launch events for other venues to help with their success. Few in the industry will want the others to have the same success.
Prash would also like to dedicate this achievement to his late grandfather Sellappah Thevarajah. Who taught him how important it was to have a constant work ethic. His late grandfather was an mechanical engineer who was constantly working till his late 80’s had Prash from the age of 5 learning about cars. This constant push gave Prash the drive, and the energy to achieve what he has at such a young age, and Prash says this is just the beginning of a long journey ahead for him and his team.
There are many lessons Prash has learned during his career. From a young age, he has learned to listen to others around him with knowledge and experience and cultivate that into accomplishments that have created the successful businesses that he runs.
Three key lessons Prash has learned so far as a CEO and their impact are as follows:
Building A Brand
Founded in 2010, Tigerbay was first launched in the United Kingdom, London, by two young men passionate about Shisha, Food, Drinks, and Desserts. Alongside them is their Strategy and Operations Director, Mubeen, who has ensured the correct structures and process are in place for the brand to grow, with his business and coaching background. Its mission is simple – To create the BEST experience for all of the customers around the globe!
Their venues embrace a relaxing atmosphere, with contemporary décor that allows customers to unwind, relax and enjoy a great night out, whatever the occasion. For them, bringing people together is important, reflected in all their venues. With Tigerbay venues in the UK, Malaysia and India, there is also a well recognised 1471 gastro pub called the The Waggon and Horses in the brand, and it will not stop there. The two founders of Tigerbay brand are instrumental in ensuring a lasting legacy for communities as the company grows worldwide. They have already started this by sponsoring young talent needing support in developing their dreams with the Tigerbay Foundation.
“Our biggest differentiator is the insights and specialisms the leaders bring to the table. Our thought process is a combination of Shane and me having different strengths and awareness of commercial and technical knowledge,” says Prash. “We are also one of the first brands in our industry to sponsor young upcoming talent and organisations. It’s within our principles to give back and work on those wanting to aspire, in their good and bad times. And that creates the genuine family values we have as culture in our brand.”
The brand’s Head of Finance, Dwight Maraj, has also been pivotal in guiding Prash’s business decisions acting as a mentor.
Towards the Future
As Tigerbay continues to expand, one growth focus has been on the customer experience. From the unique selection of products to the service a customer receives, they will be at the centre of Tigerbay’s future.
“We have noticed that across our venues across the globe we have the diversity of customers and we love that. It gives us the sense that we provide a space that is welcoming for all,” elucidates Prash. “We are looking to build on that and go even further with how we can be more inclusive and have started to concept ideas of how our venues can facilitate this and also what products meet the varied customer needs we have begun to identify.”
As a hospitality venue, Tigerbay concepts focus on in-house user experience and organic social media interaction. The company looks to continue this though it is currently reviewing what technologies other brands could use to improve that customer experience. After operating for a decade, Tigerbay is researching a customer loyalty program that customers can use across all their venues internationally to recognise they are at the centre of their activities.
“Our concept is to have an international presence, which means more venues! At the moment our fourth venue in the UK Tigerbay Enfield is being constructed to open in the New Year, just finalising our expansion across Asia and further venues are in initial talks. We are also proud to announce the launch of our new brand Shere Khan a unique Indian dining experience which will be launched in both Asia and London next year” adds Prash.