A 26-year-old Uppma Virdi, hailing from Jalandhar and living in Melbourne, received the ‘Businesswoman of the Year Award’ at the India Australia Business Community Awards (IABCA) held in Sydney, for taking the aroma of fresh Indian tea to Australian households.
India Australia Business & Community Awards (IABCA) are a national initiative that showcase the best of India from a cultural and business perspective while celebrating migrant entrepreneurship.
- IABCA is the brain child of Sonia Sadiq Gandhi, Paul Harris Fellow, Director of Gandhi Creations, Outstanding Person of the Year 2015 by UIA and the Global Origin for Indian People Awards Winner for 2012 for Community Arts & Culture.
- She is also on the Australia India Business Council – Media and Women’s Chapter, NSW Deepavali Advisory Committee and has experience in delivering over 500 events throughout her career including the Asia Pacific Banking & Finance events calendar, Premier’s Harmony Dinner and the Premier’s Multicultural Media Awards.
- Gandhi Creations produces and directs the awards program in consultation with the IABCA Panel and Committee.
- They are an award winning event management company that execute full scale event production service and social media campaigns for the corporate, public and private sector in Australia.
- Over the year’s they have also gained respect and trust of a number of high profile State Government departments, for whom they have produced a series of multi-stakeholder projects of national significance.
- In 2013, they won The Best Community Event of New South Walesby Australian Event Awards for The Premier’s Harmony Dinner part of Multicultural NSW and in 2015 they won the Best New Event for New South Wales for their Diversity and Inclusion day concept for corporates. With an Independent Industry Judging Panel (IIJP) of over 20 industry experts, an Australian Event Award is the pinnacle achievement for the events industry in Australia.
About the Award :
Uppma Virdi is the founder of Chai Walli is the granddaughter of an Ayurvedic doctor who used to make Ayurvedic chai blends. Born in India and brought up in Australia, Uppma learnt how spices balance, their properties and the art of chai.
- Her hobby of making special Ayurvedic tea with dash of spices like ginger, cardamom (elaichi), jaggery (gur), dalchini (cinnamon), saunf (fenel), etc., coupled with the expertise of her 96-year old grandfather Pritam Singh Virdi’s recipe gave birth to a start-up ‘Chai Walli’ in 2014.
- She created Chai Walli to share her grandfather’s deep rooted knowledge and her passion of chai and spices.
- At Chai Walli, Uppma curate the most authentic and perfectly balanced chai blends that bring India nostalgia. Chai Walli wholesales blends across Australia, retail them through its e-commerce website, collaborate with many Australian dessert houses and restaurants to create chai infused food and also run the Art of Chai workshops for consumers to learn about the Indian culture of chai.
- Her cross cultural Indian-Australian background has allowed Uppma to effectively share and grow the Indian culture to the Australian culture through Chai Walli.
- She is now running an online tea store, which sells herbal tea blends in various flavours, such as caffeine-free chai, black masala chai, organic black masala chai imported from Assam etc with herbs from southern Indian states and even small glasses used in India by roadside tea vends.
- Virdi is also holding ‘Art of Chai’ workshops and ‘Chai Bars’ in Australia and also documenting India chai wallahs on her trips to India