Delhi-NCR based Daalchini, an IoT-enabled physical and digital vending machines startup, has raised Rs 5 crore in a pre-Series A round led by Artha Venture Fund (AVF).
Some of the angel investors in this round include Ajay Kaul, former CEO of Jubilant Foodworks; Ashutosh Valani and Priyank Shah, Co-founders of Beardo that was recently acquired by Marico; Narendra Karnavat; Amit Lakhotia; and others.
The foodtech startup said it will use the fundraise to expand its footprint to cover all metros and to increase its product portfolio.
“We will have 2,000 vending machines installed by the end of 2021, which is an 8x growth from where we are today. We are consistently expanding our product portfolio to cater to our large and diverse customer base,” said Prerna Kalra, Co-founder of Daalchini.
“Daalchini is also very excited to have Ajay Kaul as the chief advisor,” Prerna added. Kaul is an alumnus of IIT-Delhi and XLRI Jamshedpur, and is currently a Senior Director at Everstone Capital.
“We look forward to learning from Ajay Kaul and focus on increasing ‘same-store-growth’, which might have been a challenge so far for vending machines that have a packaged supply chain,” said Vidya Bhushan, Co-founder, Daalchini.
Founded by former Paytm employees Prerna Kalra and Vidya Bhushan in 2017, Daalchini is a digital vending machine company that aggregates healthy, affordable, home-cooked meals through a network of smart vending machines deployed across Delhi, Chandigarh, Mumbai and Pune. The startup claims that it is bridging the gap of supply and demand unaddressed by providing a variety of cooked meals for under Rs 50 but 40 minutes faster than any food delivery app.
“In a post-COVID world, Daalchini’s value proposition increases manifold. They provide affordable cooked meals, from clean environments, delivered just once a day inside your office premises, but one can eat at a time convenient to them. Their solution is a no-brainer for office owners and office-going employees,” said Anirudh A Damani, Managing Partner at Artha Venture Fund.
Daalchini had raised Rs 3.5 crore in a seed round from Artha Venture Fund, and a few angels like Amit Lakhotia, ex-Paytm and Tokopedia, and Anand Ladsariya, MD, Everest Flavours. AVF thematically invests in B2B and B2C early-stage companies.
AVF has invested in nine companies including Agnikul, LenDenClub, and Everest Fleet among others. The last investment was in the Piggy Ride in July this year.