Ready to cook foodtech startup Fingerlix has raised $1.31 Mn (INR 8.5 Cr) of venture debt from the maiden venture debt fund launched by Alteria Capital this month.
Shripad Nadkarni, Founder and Director at Fingerlix stated, “Our experience of raising Venture Debt with Alteria was not only smooth and quick but delightful! The team is amazingly responsive and knowledgeable and we are sure this is the beginning of a solid partnership.”
The startup will utilise the debt raised towards building out Fingerlix’s production capacity, expansion of the product suite as well as growth into newer markets.
This represents the first investment by Alteria Capital’s maiden $123 Mn (INR 800 Cr) fund after its first close in February 2018.
A Quick Look At Fingerlix And Alteria Capital
Founded in October 2015, Fingerlix is the brainchild of Shripad Nadkarni. He teamed up with Shree Bharambe, Abhijit Berde and Varun Khanna to get the venture off the ground.
The foodtech startup serves freshly cooked and chilled food prepared in hygienic kitchens. It aims to popularise its products through its web, mobile interfaces and call centre services. It provides fresh ‘almost-ready’ food solutions like batters, mixes, curries, dals, parathas and ‘fully-ready’ accompaniments to go with them.
Till date, the Mumbai-headquartered foodtech startup has raised over $10 Mn from a bevy of investors. In July 2016, Fingerlix secured an initial investment of $1.3 Mn from Maverix Platforms, Santosh Desai and few other angel investors.
Last year in April, the foodtech startup raised another $3 Mn Series A funding from Zephyr Peacock. This was followed by raising $7 Mn (INR 45 Cr) from Accel Partners in October last year. Existing backer Zephyr Peacock also participated in the startup’s third institutional funding round.
With a growing presence in top six metros, the startup aims to be an integral part of the everyday tasty dining experience in Indian homes. Flingerlix has around 15 stock keeping units (SKUs) consisting mainly of ready-to-cook foods such as curries, batter and mixes. Currently, fresh batter accounts for nearly 50% of the foodtech startup’s total revenue.
Vinod Murali, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Alteria Capital believes, “Fingerlix is a rapidly growing business with strong fundamentals and a fantastic team. Shripad and Shree have ensured that the foundation is well established for this rocketship which has a massive market opportunity across India.”
As per an IBEF report, the Indian food and grocery market is the world’s sixth largest, with retail contributing to 70% of the sales. The Indian food retail market is expected to reach $915 Bn by 2020. Other players in this segment include Mother’s Recipe, Blue Apron and MTR, among others. Last week, another foodtech startup SmartQ raised close to $1 Mn in funding from a consortium of Dubai based investors.
Meanwhile for the new venture debt Alteria Capital fund launched recently by Ajay Hattangdi and Vinod Murali, the first deal in Fingerlix, made within two weeks of the fund launch, posits well for the increasing appetite for venture debt in startups. In the first two months of this year, Bengaluru-based online furniture rental startup Furlenco and Ahmedabad-based SME lending startup Lendingkart also went the venture debt way.
Ajay Hattangdi, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Alteria Capital said, “It represents the ideal type of transaction that we will seek out of a high-quality business with the potential to generate high returns being driven by a great team and strong investor support”.
The fund will be used to back VC-funded startups across diverse sectors, including consumer, technology, healthcare, logistics, education technology and food technology, among others. The venture debt firm will primarily look at Series A to late stage startups, investing close to $308K-$15.29 Mn ( INR2 Cr –INR 100Cr) in each startup.
With its first investment in the foodtech startup Fingerlix, the Alteria Capital venture debt fund looks posed to leverage this growing need for venture debt in the Indian startup ecosystem.