Village Global, an American early-stage venture capital firm backed by entrepreneurs such as Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Eric Schmidt, has invested an undisclosed amount into Kitchens Centre, an Indian shared kitchen prop-tech startup. The investment was part of the startup’s Pre Series A funding round.
“Kitchens Centre’s data-driven approach to property acquisition and sales management ensures maximization of occupancy and unit economics. They consider various idiosyncratic factors such as cuisine share/gap, the composition of user cohorts & associated AOV etc to target a specific location within a city,” said Eric Torenberg, Co-Founder of Village Global.
Kitchens Centre was founded last year by Lakshay Jain and provides infrastructural and technology solutions to online food & FMCG companies. However its main focus, as the name suggests, is to provide rental ready-to-use kitchens to food delivery and FMCG brands. Back in April, the startup raised $500,000 in a seed round from AngelList India.
The working of Kitchens Centre is pretty simple and straightforward. The startup takes an under-utilized potential space on rent and customizes it into a fully-equipped kitchen. Then, it lists out these kitchens on its platform to various brands or individuals for lease. The kitchens are ready to be occupied immediately and the work can be started within no time.
The Delhi-based startup started its operations with two locations in the national capital. Over the course of one year, it has scaled up to 35+ locations across 15 cities in India. It currently has a network of over 200 kitchen units and is working with more than 50 F&B brands like Choko La, Mamagoto, Biryani Blues, Sleepy Owl, Cross Border Kitchen, Masala story – Punjabi by nature, Fat Lulu’s and Nirula’s, among others.
With the fresh capital from its Pre Series A financing round, the company is aiming to expand to over 90 locations and 550 kitchen units over the next one year. It is also looking forward to expanding into newer markets in India.
Lakshay Jain, Founder, Kitchens Centre said, “Kitchens Centres is providing a dedicated and sustainable solution for businesses to grow and produce a high order volume and sales. With the obvious benefit being the reduction of cost, we also aim to create an incubated ecosystem with integrated tech solutions, supply chain, logistics support and platform aggregation. Moreover with the pandemic still very much prevalent, the food delivery business is prospering and gaining momentum in the food services industry.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has helped the food delivery industry in India grow further as people have restricted themselves from dining out. Kitchen Centre says that this will help out its business as more restaurants & food-tech startups will look to grow their production.
Erik Torenberg said, “India is one of the largest and fastest-growing F&B consumption markets and Kitchens Centre is rightly placed to address a market gap. It is enabling restaurants, food entrepreneurs as well as FMCG brands to take advantage of the boom in delivery/ logistics and achieve higher ROI – minimal capital outlay and faster go-to-market. We see significant investment opportunities in this ecosystem.”