New Delhi: Seeking to bring a touch of fashion to its food and beverage items, cafe chain Barista Lavazza on Wednesday roped in noted designer Rina Dhaka, as it looks to expand network in India.

The cafe chain that plans open over 25 new cafes in India by the end of next year will be introducing a new range of F&B (food and beverage) items under the 'Milano Collezioni' collection designed by Dhaka across all its outlets.

Apart from redesigning the uniform of Barista Lavazza and store accessories, Dhaka has also designed the catalogue and nomenclature of the new F&B range.

"Our association with Rina Dhaka to launch this year's thematic menu will see the reach and influence of fashion extending to our patrons," Lavazza South Asia Director R Shivashankar said.      

The wholly-owned subsidiary of the Italian Coffee firm Lavazza, Barista Lavazza, operates its cafes in three verticals -- Barista Lavazza Espresso Bar, Barista Lavazza Creme and Lavazza Espressions.

When asked about network expansion in India, Barista Lavazza India and SAARC COO Nilanjan Bhattacharya told PTI: "We will be opening over 25 cafes by the end of 2014 in India.

We already have over 180 cafes in the country". Besides, the cafe chain is also looking to open more cafes in Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

"At present we have a total of fifteen cafes in Nepal, Bangladesh and Dubai. Our focus will continue to remain in India and in SAARC countries," Shivashankar said.

Lavazza had entered India by acquiring Barista Coffee Company and Fresh & Honest cafe in 2007.


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