Licious gets $192m at $650-700m valuation

Licious, a direct-to-consumer (D2C) fresh meat and seafood brand, has raised $192 million as part of its Series F round, led by the Singapore government’s investment company Temasek, and Multiples Private Equity.

Brunei Investment Agency also participated in the round.

The capital raising makes Licious one of the biggest in the category with a valuation of around $650-700 million, sources said.

Existing investors 3one4 Capital, Bertelsmann India Investments, Vertex Growth Fund, and Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India, also participated in the funding round.

In late 2019, the company raised $30 million in its Series E round, led by Singapore-based Vertex Growth Fund with participation from existing investors 3one4 Capital, Bertelsmann India Investments, Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India, and Sistema Asia Fund.

After the current round, a few early angel and institutional investors have exited fully or partially.

“Around 30% of the funding is secondary, whereas around 70% is primary,” said Vivek Gupta, co-founder of Licious in an exclusive interaction with ET

ET was the first to report
the company’s fundraising plans on April 16.

Founded in 2015 by Gupta and Abhay Hanjura, Licious has entered the ready-to-eat market after establishing a presence in the fresh meat and seafood segments.

“We are looking to expand across categories and are looking at launching more value-added products,” Gupta added.

The fresh funds will help the company invest in technology to enhance its supply chain, for quality improvement and to grow its presence across more cities. Currently, Licious is present in Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai, Coimbatore, Delhi-NCR, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Pune, Vizag, Kochi, Vijayawada and Jaipur.

The company said it delivers more than 1 million orders each month across all markets.

According to industry data, 92% of the Indian meat and seafood industry is unorganised, indicating the huge opportunity that this sector has to offer. India consumes meat worth around $30 billion a year.

There has been growing investor interest in the on-demand food segment, especially in the meat and seafood category.

Licious competes with companies such as ZappFresh and FreshToHome, which are also backed by investors.

Also Read:
Investors are betting on startups making lab-grown meat

In October last year, FreshToHome
raised $121 million in its Series C round, led by Investment Corporation of Dubai, Ascent Capital and the US Government’s development finance institution DFC, and the Allana Group.

“We have grown 5x in the last 14 months since the pandemic began and are currently at a revenue run rate of Rs 1,000 crore,” Gupta said, adding that the company aims to grow at 100% over the next 18-24 months.”

For funds such as Temasek and Multiples, this could probably their first investments in the D2C foods category.

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