India: Sanjeev Kapoor’s Tinychef buys meal planning app Zelish

Photo by Ke Vin on Unsplash

Recipe discovery, meal prepping, and grocery ordering app Tinychef on Wednesday announced that it is set to acquire meal-planning app Zelish for an undisclosed sum.

Tinychef helps convert recipe content into branded conversations on Amazon Alexa and Google Home smart speakers. The platform offers automatic meal planning and grocery shopping to voice-guided cooking​, the company said in statement.

Tinychef was founded in 2017 by Bahubali Shete, Asha Shete, and chef Sanjeev Kapoor. It has over a million users and over 100,000 active monthly users in India. It also draws users from North America.

The pandemic has driven up experimentation for in-home cooking. This led to increased consumption of content around cooking and meal preps.

Through the acquisition of Zelish, Tinychef will also gain access to the app’s 125,000 users, 35% of whom are monthly active users.

“With Tinychef in the picture, users can look forward to a completely hands-free experience. We are looking forward to the Zelish app spreading across the Indian sub-continent and growing its presence globally in the North American market as well,” said Saakshi Jain, co-founder, Zelish, in a statement.

Grocery shopping pilots on Tinychef have seen nearly 50,000 users per month add ingredients to shopping lists across the app and partner channels.

Close to 4 million recipes were requested and over 1.7 million meals have been cooked using the Tinychef skill on Alexa in India and over half a million recipes were made using Zelish last year.

So far, Tinychef has raised over $2 million in funding from the likes of, angel investors such as Sequoia India managing director Rajan Anandan, Binatone’s Kanwar Chadha Alexander Lambretch who heads marketing for ABInBev South Asia apart from institutional investors such as SOSV, VCATs, JPIN VCATs, LetsVenture, NB Ventures and IFFCO.

Zelish was founded two years ago by Rakesh Edavalath, Saakshi Jain, and Arpit Joseph. It is backed by Bosch and Siemens Home Appliances. Zelish allows users plan meals, shop for ingredients and cook. It also features recipes from chefs and influencers such Ranveer Brar and Hebbar’s Kitchen.

This article was first published on livemint.com.

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

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  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.