EGK (Everyday Gourmet Kitchen) Foods Pvt. Ltd, which sells packaged crispy fried onions, has raised Rs 2 crore (around $300,000) in its pre-seed round of funding from a Nashik-based wealthy individual.
The Mumbai-based company said in a statement that it plans to use the money received from Pradyumna Kokil, a chartered accountant by profession, to upgrade its infrastructure and widen its distribution network.
Satyajit Roy started the firm in 2014 after discovering that a quarter of the total onion produced in India annually is wasted owing to improper storage conditions as well as insufficient logistical support.
“On the backend, EGK Foods is setting up a bigger factory and backward integrating with farmers so that we can assure them guaranteed buyback of goods produced at a fair price irrespective of market fluctuations,” said Roy.
EGK’s packaged crispy fried onions can be used as a cooking base in gravies, as garnish or as a snack.
Currently, EGK sells 30 metric tonnes of their finished output every month and with the factory upgrade, the company claims that production capacity will be close to 100 metric tonnes per month. It also plans to expand its bases to international markets, where the company claims to have seen tremendous demand.
EGK mainly supplies its output in bulk to wholesale and HORECA (Hotel, Restaurant, Catering) players. Besides, it also has presence in retail outlets and e-commerce platform.
“Once we heard Satyajit speak about the business we knew that we could really become big and solve the crisis that the farmers face,” said Kokil.
The company had earlier raised an undisclosed amount in funding from a couple of wealthy individuals.
Deals in the space
A number of companies in the packaged foods space have raised funding in the recent past.
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’.
In October last year, Maverix Platforms Pvt. Ltd, which runs ready-to-cook food brand Fingerlix, received $7 million (Rs 45 crore) in a Series B round of funding from Accel Partners and existing investor Zephyr Peacock India.
Last August, American food company Mars Inc., best known for its confectionery and pet food business, had offered to buy the shares held by public shareholders in Tasty Bite Eatables Ltd, which mainly exports its ready-to-heat food products. Mars completed the acquisition in November last year.