With a focus on women’s health and fitness, Bengaluru-based food and beverage &Me raised an undisclosed amount of follow-on investment from existing investors Matrix Partners India, along with participation from a consumer VC fund, Sauce.vc. The fresh funds will help &Me to expand its team, scale operations nationally and widen its product offering.
Ankur Goyal founded &Me in 2017 to bring a fusion of nutrition with ayurveda for a range of products such as PCOS drinks which are a combination of fruits, vegetables, spices, herbs, and flowers, with no added sugar or preservatives. The company’s two categories of products are Rhythm (Comfort during Periods) and Grace (Beauty from within).
The company’s focus is on solving daily lifestyle challenges of Indian women with drinks that relieve PMS symptoms and help with PCOS. It also looks to enhance their hair and skin quality from within. It claims that the beverages take care of about 30% of the daily vitamin and mineral requirements of women, helping to improve their skin and hair, with a special focus on PCOS/PCOD, along with fat metabolism, etc.
Sanjot Malhi, vice president, Matrix India said, “&Me’s core differentiator lies within its exceptional product and brand positioning that targets urban Indian women whose daily lifestyle denies them the benefit of essential micronutrients.”
&Me will soon launch their fitness range with products for Fat Metabolism, Immunity & Strength (Protein).
Manu Chandra, Founder and Managing Partner, Sauce.vc, said “At Sauce, we are always inclined towards consumer centric brands with razor-sharp USPs. &Me fits our thesis perfectly by being focussed on women’s daily health & lifestyle challenges with preservative free, clean & convenient products.”
In the consumer health market, the focus on women-centric products has evolved over time and is receiving increased investor attention as well as customer traction.
The health issues can be highlighted with the fact that 15% of Indian women aged 15-49 are anaemic and 70% have chances of osteoporosis due to lack of essential micronutrients. Reasons for these deficiencies include low nutrient absorption, aversion to supplements etc.
In the health drinks space, &Me challenges players like Cult.Fit, which serves healthy drinks such as Antioxidant Kick, which includes electrolyte-rich coconut water; Hydration Lift, which includes anti-inflammatory goji berries; Core Cleanse, which has anti-inflammatory fruits and veggies, through its Eat.Fit vertical.
There are several other offline as well as online players such as Sapfresh, Doctor Juice, Refections etc. Another big player in the segment is Raw Pressery, which offers premium cold-pressed juices and smoothies.
According to ‘Beverages: Indian Scenario’ report, the health beverages market currently stands at $300 Mn and is the fastest growing market among beverages.