Venture capital firm Aspada Investment has invested Rs 20 crore (approximately $3.2 million) in Mumbai-based InI Farms Pvt Ltd, which operates across fresh fruit value chains in crops such as pomegranate and banana, as per a release.
Founded by husband-wife duo Pankaj and Purnima Khandelwal, InI Farms provides farm extension services for farmers coupled with post harvest management and processing for both domestic consumption and export markets.
“Aspada’s investment will allow us to continue to build scale in the pomegranate and banana business units while expanding into other fruit categories,” Pankaj Khandelwal, chairman and managing director of InI Farms, said.
The fresh fruit value chain operator is now looking to augment its sourcing belt by expanding to Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat, along with increasing its farm extension activities and processing capabilities to work with more farmers to enable market linkages for their products.
InI Farms exports pomegranates and bananas from India and has sales in 19 countries across Europe, the Middle East and Southeast Asia. The company had previously raised venture investment from Ronnie Screwvala-owned Unilazer Ventures and Aavishkaar, along with angel investors like Pavan Vaish and Ashish Gupta.
Bangalore-based Aspada provides long-term, growth capital to entrepreneurs who address large market needs.
This would be the third investment by Aspada in agricultural product and service company after it invested in Lawrencedale Agroprocessing India, a fresh vegetable supply chain company in 2013, and last October backed Delhi-based fresh fruit supply chain company Allfresh Supply Management Pvt Ltd.
Backed by Soros Economic Development Fund (SEDF), Aspada has previously also invested in Capital Float, an online platform that provides working capital finance to SMEs (small and medium enterprises) in India; ThinkLink Supply Chain Services, a provider of turnkey project management, design, skill development and staffing services; NeoGrowth Credit, a merchant cash advance business that provides loans to small merchants; and Schedulers Logistics, a cold chain logistics firm.
In addition, Aspada oversees the portfolio of the SONG Fund, an early-stage VC firm funded by SEDF, Omidyar Network and Google.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)