In the last two years, India has seen more than a dozen food start-ups coming up with new models and categories. On the one hand, technology-based food startups like foodpanda, TinyOwl, Zomato and other players in the segment are gaining momentum while on the other hand; food delivery startups are coming up with tiffin and healthy or home-cooked food delivery businesses.
Moving with this uncertain growth that is driving the US$13.56 billion Indian food industry growing at a rate of 17 per cent per annum, these companies are getting investors’ attention by raising funds for their expansion in the country and also for strengthening their team.
Gurgaon-based Bite Club Bite Club, a food ordering startup, has raised Rs 3 crore in funding from Powai Lake Ventures, with participation from angel investors including Aneesh Reddy (Capillary Technologies), Ashish Kashyap (Goibibo Group) and Alok Mittal (Canaan Partners). The group is planning to use the raised funds for building technology, growing operations and expansion of the brand.
On the other hand, Chaayos, started in 2013 end, and being operated by two IITians, Nitin Saluja and Raghav Verma, is in talks with Venture Capitalists to raise funds. With eight outlets in Delhi-NCR, the gourmet chai player is planning to tap the Pune, Mumbai and the Bengaluru market by end of 2015.
“We have not yet finalised the deal but are in advance talks with VCs to raise Rs 40 crore which will be used for expansion of the brand, building team and marketing the brand right,” shares Raghav Verma, Co-Founder, Chaayos.
According to experts, food startups are the future of Indian food industry as they know the right nerves of the changing trends and there is a very different excitement happening around this development.
Likewise, Swiggy, a food ordering and delivery company based out of Bengaluru has raised Rs. 12 crore from Accel Partners and SAIF Partners. Founded on the idea to get food delivered for the best restaurants in a neighbourhood, the group has its own fleet of delivery personnel who pick-up orders from restaurants and deliver it to customers.
Commenting on the same, Accel Partners, one of the investor groups in the company says, “Accel Partners, founded in the year 1983 has been committed to helping exceptional entrepreneurs build lasting, category-defining technology companies. Utilising a focused, "prepared mind" approach to investing, we partner with businesses that show potential for significant long-term success in specific sectors.”
Thus, we can see that the scene in the Indian food industry is changing with investors not only willing to invest in the casual dining and QSR segment, but also in food startups, which is gaining momentum these days.