Bengaluru based leading gourmet meat brand, Licious, run by Delightful Gourmet Pvt. Ltd, announced today that it has secured $10 million in a Series B funding round led by Mayfield India, 3one4 Capital, Sistema Asia Fund and Neoplux Technology Fund. The investment is expected to boost business growth for the company and facilitate its expansion plans in other markets like Hyderabad and Delhi-NCR. In a highly commoditized space, this investment will fuel the company’s innovation efforts which have helped the brand achieve a differentiated consumer perception in a short time.
Licious, which was founded in June 2015 by Abhay Hanjura and Vivek Gupta, is a consumer brand backed by technology which is pioneering its way into reshaping the meat industry in India and structuring a highly unorganized sector by taking a major chunk of the value chain under its purview.
Built on the farm to fork model, Licious owns the entire back-end supply chain powered by stringent cold chain control in order to scientifically maintain the quality and freshness of each product that reaches the end user. This unique business model allows the company to bolster its business in a sustainable manner. The company’s plan to scale up its business has been complemented by its sharp focus on profitability. The securing of a Series B Funding, in a volatile investor environment, validates the strong fundamentals that has accelerated growth for the company since its inception in 2015.
Licious had previously raised angel funding and Series A Funding of USD 3.5 Million from 3one4 Capital and Mayfield Capital. The Series B fund, which has been garnered within two years of its existence, will be generated by the two existing investors as well two new investors. Sistema Asia, a Russia based venture fund will make its first consumer investment in India through Licious, after completing three investments in the technology space in the recent past. Neoplux Technology Fund, a South Korean Fund, is foraying into the Indian market by investing in Licious.
“We are excited to announce our Series B funding of USD 10 Million, as it comes in the wake of rapid expansion plans that we have set out for the company’s growth. Being a modern consumer brand that places high importance on the product quality and bespoke consumer led innovations in our product range, complemented by assured delivery promise, we wanted to establish a startup that revolutionizes the meat industry in India. We are extremely happy that Licious has started off in the right direction and is now the highest funded startup in the meat industry.” said Abhay Hanjura, Co-Founder at Licious.
“It is heartening to note that in an investor environment that is fraught with uncertainty, we have managed to secure some of the most reputed funding companies to put faith in our business. Our strengths lie in the fact that we work on sound business fundamentals that focus on profitability and sustainability. The Series B Fund will greatly aid us in beefing up our back-end and expanding in newer markets after strongly laying the foundation in the Bangalore market.” said Vivek Gupta, Co-Founder at Licious.
“Licious is a first mover in building a full stack meat gourmet brand in a market where demand is unconstrained (70% + non-vegetarians) and supply is largely unorganized (90%+). Company has exhibited rapid scale and customer loyalty in Bangalore in a capital efficient manner. We at Sistema Asia Fund are excited to partner with Abhay and Vivek in building a new age Pan-India gourmet brand leveraging the power of technology and internet” Dhruv Kapoor, MD, Sistema Asia Fund Advisory
“There is growing demand for branded fresh meat and meat products in India. The Licious brand, with its focus on taste, quality and hygiene, is well on its way to serve this market need. The Company is driven by product innovation and technology combined with a focus on traditional business fundamentals that has helped scale the business and build India’s first fresh meat brand. We are happy to have partnered with them and are excited about their journey ahead” said Nikhil Khattau, MD, Mayfield India.
Licious has expanded exponentially in the past two years and now possesses 11 delivery hubs and employs around 250 people across different functions in their company. The number of orders has grown from 1000 in the first month to a remarkable 50,000 orders in 2017. The assurance of quality and health has been a key feature of the company since the beginning and has translated into an 80% repeat customer rate. In order to meet the standards of freshness and quality, Licious has formulated a zero inventory model. It has built contractual arrangement with large institutional meat vendors who are trained on managing livestock and meat handling techniques. Therefore, they are able to regularly supply fresh produce to Licious by adhering to the stringent quality standards set by the sourcing team within the company.