FreshToHome rakes in $121 million as it targets the Middle East

FreshToHome rakes in $121 million as it targets the Middle East
Shan Kadavil, co-founder and CEO of FreshToHome
27 Oct, 2020

Bengaluru-based online fresh fish, meat and vegetable retailer FreshToHome Foods has raised $121  million (about Rs 891 crore) in a growth round to fuel its expansion in India and the Middle East.

The round – Series C – was led by Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD), the principal investment arm of the Government of Dubai; global alternative asset manager Investcorp; homegrown private equity firm Ascent Capital; US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC);  Indian meat processor and exporting firm, Allana Group  and other investors.

Iron Pillar, the lead investor from its Series B, participated in this round with a significant investment of $19 million, the company said in a statement.

“COVID-19 transformed the fish and meat purchasing behaviour of consumers dramatically. Due to safety concerns, consumers made the habit-forming shift to e-commerce and we saw online demand for our products going up many fold this year thanks to safety guarantee of 100% fresh and 0% chemicals,” Shan Kadavil, co-founder and CEO of FreshToHome said.

A portion of this round, about $36.2 million – was raised from Ascent Capital and US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) earlier this month. 

The company last raised funds in a $20 million Series B funding round, led by venture capital firm Iron Pillar, with participation from Joe Hirao, founder of Japanese multi-business firm ZIGExN. It also received $11 million as part of the Series A funding round in May 2019. 

FreshToHome claims to process approximately 1.5 million B2C orders per month and clocks about $85 million in annualized sales run rate on the platform.

The company enables its marketplace sellers to source and sell meat and fish directly from livestock farmers and fishermen in most major Indian cities such as Mumbai, Delhi/NCR, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune, Kerala and Tamil Nadu and in the UAE. The company is planning to expand to other key GCC markets including Saudi Arabia.

“FreshToHome is a leader in leveraging AI-based technology and business innovation to bring a superior value proposition to customers and suppliers in a large and important market,” Khalifa Al Daboos, deputy CEO of Investment Corporation of Dubai said. 

Some of the early backers of FreshToHome include Mark Pincus, Zynga founder; David Krane, CEO of Google Ventures; Pete Briger, chairman of Fortress; Abdul Aziz Al-Ghurair, chairman of Mashreq Bank, and Rajan Anandan of Sequoia.

 The five-year-old company, founded by Shahnawaz Kadavil and Mathew Joseph, competes with Bengaluru-based Licious in the targeted meat delivery segment, and startups such as BigBasket, ZappFresh, along with local offline players using Swiggy and Dunzo, in the larger grocery delivery segment.