Ready-to-eat food start-up Chefs Basket has raised $6 million (about Rs 40 crore) in series A funding from private equity firm SAIF Partners and Haresh Chawla, partner at India Value Fund Advisor, according to a report in The Economic Times.
The investors were issued fresh equity in the company against the funds raised. The investment also gives Vishal Sood of SAIF Partners a seat on the board of Mumbai-based Fizzy Foodlabs, the owner of Chefs Basket.
Chefs Basket will use the funds to expand its existing range of ready-to-cook packaged meals, add new distribution channels, and to strengthen its marketing and sales team. The brands plans to introduce a range of fresh products with lower shelf life and also its own range of pasta sauces, the report said.
The firms is targeting presence across top 15 cities of India, with a portfolio of 30 SKUs (stock keeping units) by the end of March 2016.
Founded in 2012 by three IIT-Bombay graduates, Chefs Basket claims to sell about 1.3 lakh units of single serve packs a month, 90% of which is through hypermarkets alone. It is also working closely with e-commerce sites including Amazon, Flipkart, Snapdeal, BigBasket, Paytm and Grofers for the sale of its products. With these partnerships, the firms targets to reach sales of 4-5 lakh units a month by March next year.
The firms is also eyeing international markets, and plans to take its products to South Africa, Canada and Australia by January 2016.
The ready-to-cook food market is still at nascent stage in India but is definitely catching investors’ attention. In September, another ready-to-cook meals delivery startup InnerChef raised $1.6 million from a clutch of high-profile angel entrepreneurs including Vijay Shekhar Sharma of Paytm, Phanindra Sama of redBus, and Anupam Mittal of Shaadi.com.