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Axilor, 1crowd back meat and fish distribution firm FreshR
Photo Credit: Pixabay

Zoofresh Foods Private Limited, which runs business-to-business (B2B) supplier of fish and meat products FreshR, on Thursday said it has racked up seed funding of $1.2 million (around Rs 9.24 crore) co-led by Axilor Ventures and 1crowd.

The New Delhi-based platform plans to deploy the fresh proceeds to expand its geographical presence, grow tech vertical and scale up team.

Founded by Ambika Satapathy and Sadananda Satapathy in 2016, FreshR uses a combination of operational efficiency & technology integration to aggregate an extremely fragmented national demand base and ensure quality, variety and secure high-value transactions for its customers, the company said in a statement.

The firm is poised for exponential growth, with the goal to touch around $50 million ARR by the end of FY23, it added.

"The Indian meat industry, of which General Trade and HORECA make up the largest segments, suffers from fragmented demand, high perishability and under-invested, opaque supply chains. This leads to poor product quality and massive wastage. Our vision is to organize the domestic market by using technology to cater to this fragmented demand and investing in world class infrastructure to manage pan-India sourcing and distribution," said Satapathy.

“FreshR’s full-stack model and digital footprint are key to increase their relevance to their buyers and distributors. The platform has been able to achieve higher than industry growth while maintaining healthy contribution margins,” said Prachi Sinha, the head of deal at Axilor.


The company also launched an application earlier this year which is a one-of-a-kind resource used to standardise prices and grades for the sector and allows bulk buyers from across India to place orders and track quality processes. 


“Ambika and Sadanand are quintessential entrepreneurs who have built a strong business that targets the meat and fisheries supply chain industry bringing high quality standards, transparency and financial access to the various stakeholders in the value chain. Their tech lead model helps integrate a highly fragmented industry bringing in significant efficiencies in creating time and place utility to highly perishable products," said Natasha Kothari, Partner at 1Crowd.


FreshR had earlier raised a pre-seed round from Villgro, Upaya Social Ventures, Beyond Capital Fund and other early-stage funders. 

Meanwhile, Bengaluru-based seed fund Axilor Ventures was founded by Infosys co-founders Kris Gopalakrishnan and SD Shibulal. The fund has invested in startups, including Emitrr, eShipz, Peer Robotics, Helicrofter, BizzTM, Clergo, and SuperBeings.

Mumbai-based 1crowd is an equity crowd funding platform that connects investors with a host of promising startups and early-stage ventures.

The broader fish and meat space has been gaining traction from a large number of investors for the past two years.

Last year in February, TenderCuts, an omni-channel meat and seafood supplier, raised Rs 110 crore ($15 million) in a round led by homegrown private equity firm Paragon Partners.

In 2020, Infifresh Foods Pvt. Ltd, which operates seafood-focussed B2B startup Captain Fresh,  raised $2.3 million (Rs 17.2 crore at current exchange rates) in pre-Series A funding.

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