Amid this season of lay-offs and shutdowns, online-first restaurant FreshMenu, which lets users order pre-cooked meal packages, has landed a staggering ₹110 crore in fresh fundraise, led by Zodius Capital, along with the participation of existing investor – Lightspeed Venture Partners.
And while nothing has been disclosed much on the stake acquired or valuations, the online restaurant is reportedly valued at around $45 million, which converts to about Rs. 300 crore, says ET based on its source of two people aware of the development.
This fresh capital will be used to hire more people, expand its operations and build brand.
Founded in 2014, Bangalore-based FreshMenu owns both — the kitchen and the delivery service with its own employed staff. This helps the company control the quality of its products and services. While it started with a single kitchen in Bangalore, FreshMenu has now spread to Mumbai as well as parts of Delhi-NCR. The startup has a dynamic menu, changing everyday with over 100 chefs preparing food at different locations. It claims of delivering every order within 45 minutes of confirmation.
As for numbers, FreshMenu is seeing a month-on-month increase of 30% in the number of orders and 25% in its user base. It had raised $5 million in Series A round of funding last year from Lightspeed Venture Partners.
While FreshMenu runs on a different, online-first model, it will still face stiff competition from India’s food delivery juggernauts — most notably from the likes Zomato and TinyOwl. However, a more direct competition would be the likes of Faasos and HolaChef, the former of which received a staggering 200 crores in fresh funds, and the later of which got Ratan Tata as backer. HolaChef initially started out as an aggregator, but post getting $3.1 million from Kalaari Capital, it switched to a centralized kitchen model.
Startup intelligence and data aggregator Tracxn estimates that over 30 food-tech startups raised seed or angel funding last year but very few of them have been able to raise follow-on funding. And a lot of them go unnoticed, eventually closing operations.