Singapore-based CCube Angels Network has invested Rs 3.5 crore (around $515,000) in health- and nutri-foods maker Inner Being Wellness Pvt. Ltd, which markets its products under the brand ‘Inner Being’.
In a statement, the Hyderabad-headquartered firm said that it plans to use the fresh capital for product development and expansion in tier-1 cities in India and a few other countries.
Launched in 2012 by Pavan Raj Kanungo and headed by CS Jadhav, Inner Being offers items in the wellness, nutricare, and nutrifood categories. It also owns and operates an online store.
“Inner Being is introducing traditional foods like millets, quinoa and other ancient grains in more contemporary formats that appeal to the modern generation such as breakfast mixes, snack mixes, savory snacks, crackers, cookies and energy bars,” said Jadhav.
The company currently offers several millet-based products such as jowar idli, jowar upma, ragi malt, jowar flakes, millet cookies in Hyderabad and is now in the process of expanding to Delhi and Mumbai this year. It plans to spread to 10 cities in couple of years.
Inner Being is also preparing to launch a range of new mixes such as quinoa porridge, millet & nut cake, gluten-free pizza, and millet pancake which will cater to health-conscious consumers.
Inner Being had last year secured funding from Springforth Investment Managers (SIM), a startup accelerator launched by mid-market focused investment banking firm Springforth Capital Advisors Pvt. Ltd.
“We have a strong belief that nutricereals will be the next smart food and specially millet, being a dry land crop, will improve livelihoods at the rural level and at the same time offer nutritious products to the urban consumers,” said Atim Kabra, director of Frontline Strategy, which manages CCube Angels Network.
CCube Angels Network has been structured as a pledge fund. It had earlier backed companies such as Hyperdata.IO, Simbus Technologies, Omnipresent Retail India Pvt. Ltd, Kloneworld, and Cashe.
Deals in the space
Investors have shown considerable interest in the broader packaged foods segment in the recent past.
Last month, Nikhil Vora, the founder of Sixth Sense Ventures, invested money in his personal capacity in Mumbai-based specialty food ingredients brand Saucery.
In May, packaged foods startups Y-Cook India Pvt Ltd raised $5 million in its Series B round of funding led by Dutch impact fund Oikocredit and Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal-backed venture capital firm 021 Capital.
Around the same time, US-based private equity firm General Atlantic LLC inked a deal to pick up a majority stake in the maker of Ching’s Secret sauce and instant noodles, marking its first control transaction in the country.
In January, Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia invested Rs 152 crore ($23 million) in Southern Health Foods, which markets its products under the brand ‘Manna Foods’.
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