Gurugram-based water ecommerce startup OwO has raised $3 Mn (INR 22.5 Cr) during a seed funding round.
Founded in 2020 by Ajay Changani, OwO is a D2C water seller that sells drinking water, water purifiers and packaged drinks to customers through its website. The startup refers to itself as a water-as-a-service (WaaS) platform. Its mobile application allows customers to live track the quality of the water they are drinking.
The startup has partnered with packaged water brands including Bisleri, Aquafina, Kinley, Bailey, DivyaJal and Himalayan as well as Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Tropicana, Parle, Red Bull, Catch, and others. OwO will use the freshly infused capital towards expansion and product development.
“We have now entered a D2C model to deliver the healthiest water to every Indian home through a water subscription model. With a disruptive business model, it uses technology to ensure that every glass of water consumed in every home is in its healthiest form,” said OwO cofounder and CEO Ajay Changani.
The Indian packaged drinking water industry was estimated to be worth INR 16,000 Cr ($2.13 Bn) in 2018 and is expected to grow to INR 40,306 Cr ($5.38 Bn) in 2023 at a CAGR of 20.75%. Based on the volume of water sold, the market is expected to reach 35.53 Bn litres by 2023, growing at a CAGR of 18.25% from 2018 to 2023.
According to UNICEF, less than 50% of Indians have access to safely managed drinking water. More than 1.96 Mn households in the country drink water that is chemically contaminated by fluoride, arsenic and other substances.
Also, more than two-thirds of all districts in the country are affected by extreme water depletion. India is known to be one of the biggest consumers of groundwater in the region due to the large-scale proliferation of borewells and other drilling activities. This has also led to extreme groundwater depletion issues.