Exclusive: Roots Ventures backs health foods brand Eighty20
Kaarya Foods, a Mumbai based startup that retails packaged health foods under the Eighty20 brand, has raised an undisclosed sum in a seed funding round from Roots Ventures, a sector agnostic venture capital firm that counts Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma as an anchor investor.
The startup will use the capital raised to expand its product categories, create a presence in more cities including Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Delhi, and venture overseas into the Middle East, founder Kajal Bhatia told TechCircle while confirming the deal.
Kaarya Foods currently retails health and protein bars via its own portal and ecommerce platforms Amazon and BigBasket. Details on some of the other product categories that the startups plans to enter were not available.
“The health food space is bursting at the seams. Our focus remains on retailing preservative-free, plant-based foods across ecommerce platforms and stores. We have a funding runway for a year and a half. The next round of funding will probably be coming up in either 2020 or 2021,” she said. Details on whether the startup had raised any external capital earlier were also not available.
Bhatia, a nutrition consultant for Boston Consulting Group, Dun & Bradstreet and Fullerton India, founded Kaarya Foods in 2017.
The packaged health foods market in India is fairly crowded with a number of established brands, some that have raised funding from a varied mix of investors. There’s Bengaluru based Sproutlife Foods which retails protein bars and breakfast cereals under the brand Yoga Bar. The startup is backed by consumer brands focused venture capital firm Fireside Ventures.
Then there is Pune based HW Wellness Solutions which retails a range of health foods under the True Elements brand and is backed by the RP-Sanjiv Goenka Group. Another Pune based startup, Stayfit Enterprize, which retails energy bars are other health foods, counts model and fitness enthusiast Milind Soman as an investor.
Kaarya Foods will also have to contend with Curefit, the Mukesh Bansal founded health and fitness startup that is backed by deep-pocketed investors such as Epiq Capital, Unilever Ventures, Accel and Infosys founder Kris Gopalakrishnan’s family office. The startup last raised a $120 million round form multiple investors. In April this year, it launched an incubation programme for health foods brands and allocated $5 million to the programme. It will work with startups to create health food brands that can be retailed through its Eat.fit platform.