Mumbai-based agritech startup FreshVnF has raised $2 Mn in its first round of funding led by Equanimity Ventures. The round also saw participation from GVFL and Manish Choksi (non- executive vice chairman at Asian Paints Limited) through his family office.
FreshVnF was founded in 2018 by Atul Kumar, Vikas Dosala, Sumit Rai, and Aashish Krishnatre. It is a machine learning (ML) driven technology platform which helps in creating market linkages for farmers by streamlining the supply chain and bring efficiency and transparency to the entire value chain.
It helps hotels, restaurants to procure fresh produce online with a data-driven inventory and replenishment platform. It also caters to retail consumers through its stores operating under the brand “Fraazo”.
According to the startup, it currently delivers over 15 tons of fruits, vegetables and farm produce per day and is working with about 300 outlets. It plans on growing its clients base to over 5000 in one year and supply over 100 tons per day.
“These funds will help us grow our farm network for consistent supplies, build our technology platform for seamless supply chain operations at scale, and help us achieve our goal of providing fresh farm produce to end customer within 16 hours of harvesting. FreshVnF will work aggressively to increase its retail footprint and service over one lakh retail customers in western India,” said Atul Kumar, cofounder of FreshVnF.
One can download the FreshVnF mobile app and use it for ordering fruits and vegetables. The orders are delivered to the partners who ensure delivery of fine farm produce.
Equanimity Investments was launched in 2017 by Rajesh Sehgal to support technology-enabled, early-stage startups. It counts companies such a PeelWorks, Bookeventz, BabyChakra, Sqrrl, RayBaby and DrStore as its portfolio startups.
Increasing Investments Across Agritech In India
With more than 58% of the rural population relying on agriculture for sustenance, India currently ranks second globally in terms of farm output.
According to Inc42 DataLabs, the total funding in agritech startups in India has grown from $46.1 Mn (INR 320 Cr) 2017 to $66.6 Mn (INR 463 Cr) in 2018, which is indicative of the growing investor interest in this sector.
However, the Indian agricultural space is plagued by the dominance of middlemen who control the price of the produce and inflate their margins. In order to solve this problem, several startups are working towards eliminating the need for middlemen was connecting farmers directly to the consumers.
Most recently, Bengaluru-based agritech startup Ninjacart raised INR 625 Cr ($89.5 Mn) from US-based venture capital company Tiger Global. Following this investment, the startup is now valued at over $320 Mn (INR 2,232 Cr).
In April, Rajasthan-based FreshoKartz had raised an undisclosed amount in its seed funding round from Chennai-based investor Sunil Kumar Singhvi along with a group of angel investors and high net worth individuals on convertible note terms.