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Dubai SWF, other investors inject Dh444m into food platform

October 28, 2020
finance & economy

Iron Pillar, the lead investor from Series B, participated in this round with a significant investment of $19 million.

Freshtohome.com, an e-commerce platform for fish and meat, on Tuesday said it raised $121 million (Dh444 million) through a number of investors including Dubai’s sovereign wealth fund as part of its Series C funding.

It raised funds from sovereign wealth fund Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD), investment management firm Investcorp, India’s Ascent Capital, US government’s finance institution DFC, the Allana Group and others.

Iron Pillar, the lead investor from Series B, participated in this round with a significant investment of $19 million.

Kearney Middle East has projected that e-commerce will become the main source of growth in the retail sector over the next five years, which has grown from a mere $5 billion in 2015 to about $24 billion in 2020. Led by the region's largest economies Saudi Arabia and the UAE, it is estimated that e-commerce in the Gulf will grow to $29 billion in 2021, $34 billion in 2022, $39 billion by 2023, $44 billion by 2024 and $50 billion by the end of 2025.

Freshtohome.com said the funds raised under Series C will support its expansion in India and the Middle East with plans to launch operations in Saudi Arabia.

The company is targeting $200 million sales in 2021 while maintaining current EBITDA profitability in mature cities through deeper supply chain integration on the platform

“Covid-19 transformed the fish and meat purchasing behaviour of consumers dramatically. Due to safety concerns, consumers made the habit-forming shift to e-commerce and we saw online demand for our products going up many folds this year,” said Shan Kadavil, Co-Founder and CEO of FreshToHome.

“We are just beginning to scratch the surface of a very large market and the current capital raise will help us realise our full potential through rapid expansion in India and the Middle East,” he said.

“we seek to partner with companies like FreshToHome that are able to break new ground for the greater good while also enjoying a large shareholder value creation opportunity. This successful fundraising is a strong recognition of the company’s achievements and significant potential,” said Khalifa Al Daboos, deputy CEO of ICD.

“We look at companies who redefine the category with proven top-line and bottom-line impact. We believe that FreshToHome fits this bill perfectly and is poised to achieve significant scale,” said Gaurav Sharma, head of private equity at Investcorp India.

khaleejtimes

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