India fresh produce b2b marketplace will use new capital to expand into more domestic markets

Fruitnet Pomegranate India

Indian start-up and fresh produce b2b marketplace Vegrow has secured US$25 of funding in its Series B round, led by Prosus Ventures.

Vegrow focuses on matchmaking across demand and supply for fruits, aggregating multiple channels (wholesalers/semi-wholesalers, modern trade and general trade) in 100 cities and working with more than 20,000 growers.

Vegrow has grown fifteenfold in the last 12 months and now it processes more than 200 tonnes of fruits daily across a number of categories with pomegranates being its largest.

Shobhit Jain, co-founder of Vegrow, said the funds will primarily be used for expansion into more demand centres, establishing dominance across supply micro-pockets and nurturing a world-class talent pool in product, engineering and other support function domains.

“Being a table-top consumption product, fruits are consumed raw, and consumers are highly sensitive to the quality,” said Jain.

“Vegrow adds value at source and supply chain to ensure and preserve the quality consistently. We are very excited to have Prosus lead this round and all our internals double down their partnership. We aim to grow sustainably and deliver a US$5bn outcome within the next five years.” 

Ashutosh Sharma, Prosus Ventures’s head of investments, India said the company had been tracking the agritech space closely and believes in the sector’s potential.

“The fruits industry being historically unorganised, fragmented and inefficient, is poised for similar tech-led disruption. Vegrow has catapulted to pole position by serving pan-India demand through its focus on scale and technology. We are excited to back them as they chase the next level of growth in the country,” said Sharma.

Mrudhukar Batchu, Vegrow co-founder said the company had built the capability to harness farmer chatter, estimate farmland produce and measure demand across Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 markets.

“Building systems and capabilities which can scale is the core tech vision at Vegrow. Today, we have a dynamic understanding of customer quality expectations across more than100 markets and a real-time view into US$500m worth of produce across farmlands,” said Batchu.

“Our tech helps in matchmaking by codification of customer quality, building future farm inventory, deskill supply chain and crowdsourcing market intelligence (price, quality and volume). Our system predicts real-time demand and pricing across markets for more than 15 fruits. Our Fresh OS Velynk ties all of this together to ensure an agile and reliable supply chain.”

Matrix Partners India, Elevation Capital, Lightspeed India and Ankur Capital also participated in the round, meanwhile, prominent angel investor Sanjiv Rangrass continues to back the company.