Mohandas Pai, Kanwaljit Singh invest in Licious

Former Infosys board member and CFO TV Mohandas Pai, former co-founder and senior managing director of Helion Venture Partners Kanwaljit Singh and a few others will make a seed investment of about $1 million (Rs 6.4 crore) in three-month-old online meat ordering startup Licious run by Bangalore-based Delightful Gourmet Pvt Ltd.

Founded in June 2015 by Abhay Hanjura, an insurance industry professional, and Vivek Gupta, former finance controller at Helion Venture Partners, Licious became operational in August. The founders claim the company served 1,000 orders in Bangalore in the first month, exceeding their expectation.

About half of the seed investment has already been transferred while the rest has been committed. Founders Hanjura and Gupta told VCCircle that the company would raise funds from institutional investors in two months as they have charted out a plan to enter 11 cities in three years.

Online meat delivery is a relatively untested opportunity in India. Licious as a meat and seafood supplier will manage the supply chain from processing to delivery. Hanjura said the firm will have a central processing centre and a number of storage units in each city to ensure delivery within 90 minutes. “We work on a zero inventory model; so we will not have larger freezers that keep meat for days,” he said.

Licious offers customers choices such as fresh meat, cold cuts and marinated items. “Licious also offers a subscription model that allows pre-set delivery dates and products apart from delivering marinated meat at the doorstep as per consumer requirements,” said Gupta.  

“Licious is an interesting business proposition because it addresses a large and unorganised market. The founding team has deep experience in building large businesses and has already put together a best-in-class senior team,” said Kanwaljit Singh.

“With its focus, perseverance and expertise, Licious brings a fresh approach to a much-ignored space,” said Mohandas Pai.

Mohandas Pai, who is chairman of venture capital firm Aarin Capital, is an active angel investor with a portfolio of over a dozen startups, including self-drive car rental Zoomcar and fitness startup GetActive. Kanwaljit Singh’s family office Fireside Ventures looks to invest Rs 25 lakh to Rs 1 crore in consumer-focused ventures.

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