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MEAT & SEAFOOD

Licious gets funds infusion to spur tech installation & brand building
Friday, 18 May, 2018, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Nandita Vijay, Bengaluru
Licious, India’s leading gourmet meat brand which received angel and Series A and B funding, is now looking to deploy this capital for technology infusion, brand building and product innovation.

Vivek Gupta and Abhay Hanjura, founders, Licious, told F&B News, “We have received two rounds of funding so far. We raised angel funding and Series A of $3.5 million from 3one4 Capital and Mayfield Capital.”

“After that, we have secured $10 million in a Series B funding round led by Mayfield India, 3one4 Capital, Sistema Asia Fund and Neoplux Technology Fund. It will enable facilitate our growth and  entry into newer markets of Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR),” they added.

India’s growing middle-class is driving the growth of the meat sector. Research indicated around 80 per cent growth in meat demand by 2022 will be driven by convenience, where focus is on processed meat, fish and poultry products.

Annually, India consumes close to $30 billion meat, and 90 per cent of this is handled by the unorganised market. Out of the grocery market, which is worth $300 billion, meat is the only largest category which is not organised.

“We are the first and only company which has taken an approach to create a brand in this space by organising farms, creating infrastructure and bringing the right product to consumer’s doorstep,” they added.

The Bengaluru-based company, operated by Delightful Gourmet, has an employee base of 600 people, and is currently clocking 5,500 orders daily, with an average order value of Rs 550 in the city.

Licious follows an end-to-end business model, that starts from procuring the fresh produce to processing, storage and delivery.

This allows to control the supply chain, strictly maintain the freshness and quality of the product till the final delivery to the consumer.

The company ensures the cold chain throughout the supply chain at a temperature between 0 and 4 degree Centigrade, so that the quality is not compromised. The distribution is managed in a manner that there is zero inventory.

“The key strengths of Licious that spur its growth prospects are marketing of finest and freshest meat. Technology aids traceability, right from the time the meat is sourced till it is made into the final product,” said Gupta.

“High-end systems track date of supply, record the weight and undertakes microbial study and this linked up to a customer order,” he added.

“Barcodes track its shelf life, manufacturing and expiry dates. Temperature-controlled transportation helps maintain high quality-standards. All these systems significantly facilitate the standardisation of meat processing at Licious,” said Gupta.

“Our business is growing across all categories. We do have a certain seasonality impacts. For instance, the Government of India has implemented a ban on fishing in the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal coast, to protect the fishes during breeding season. It results in a slump in seafood supply. Here we urge people to consume fresh water fishes,” said Hanjura.

“After Licious was incorporated, over a dozen companies emerged in this space. So yes, we are glad that we have given the entrepreneurs the belief that this is a great space to be in,” he added.

“Most companies view it as a butchery business. On the contrary, it is a combination of science, supply chain excellence, product innovation and cold chain management,” Hanjura said.
 
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