Disposable tableware co Tamul Plates raises funding from Artha Initiative, Upaya

Assam-based Tamul Plates Marketing Pvt Ltd, a producer of palm leaf tableware, has raised an undisclosed amount of follow-on investment from Upaya Social Ventures and Artha Initiative to augment its operations across the North-eastern region, as per a press release.

The company will utilise the money to diversify its product line, expand its domestic sales and distribution networks, and tap export markets for its products.

“This investment is a recognition that Tamul Plates is well positioned to meet the growing demand for high quality, environmentally responsible, and ethically produced products,” Tamul Plates CEO Arindam Dasgupta said in the statement.

Previously, Tamul Plates Marketing, which distributes disposable plates and bowls to various markets in India, had received a seed investment from Upaya Social Ventures through Upaya’s Lift UP Project in December 2013.

“It has been a highlight of the Artha Venture Challenge to uncover a pioneering and innovative enterprise in Tamul Plates,” said Artha Initiative’s director Audrey Selian. Artha Initiative is associated with Switzerland-based Rianta Capital Zurich and is focused on impact investment in social enterprise space in India.

In November last year, Upaya Social Ventures and Artha Initiative announced that they have formalised a collaboration through which they will work together to develop a pipeline of and co-invest in India’s Small and Growing Business (SGB) sector.

Barpeta-based Tamul Plates is the only established producer of disposable tableware in the Northeast - a region with more than 100,000 hectares of arecanut under plantation and one of the poorest areas of the country.

It has a clientele list including a mix of restaurants, fast food establishments, event managers, and direct-to consumer retailers.

Tamul Plates produces and markets disposable plates and bowls made from arecanut (palm) tree leaves under the Tambul Leaf Plates brand. The company produces dinnerware through a network of affiliates across the tribal regions of Northeast India.

Recently, Tamul Plates had entered into an agreement with the state government of Assam to supply the equipment for and train an extended network of affiliate rural producers.

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