India’s FreshToHome in advanced talks with Gulf funds on $130m investment

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FreshToHome, the India-based e-commerce platform that specialises in fresh vegetables, fish and meat, is in an advanced stage of negotiations with Gulf-based investment fund, sources have told Arabian Business.

The talks centre around Bahrain’s Investcorp, Raed Capital in Dubai and Mumbai-based Allana Group, which has major presence in the Middle East, investment banking sources revealed.

FreshToHome, the India-based e-commerce platform that specialises in fresh vegetables, fish and meat, is in an advanced stage of negotiations with Gulf-based investment fund, sources have told Arabian Business.

The talks centre around Bahrain’s Investcorp, Raed Capital in Dubai and Mumbai-based Allana Group, which has major presence in the Middle East, investment banking sources revealed.

Sources said the current round of funding values the Indian e-commerce platform at around $500 million

The Bangalore-based e-commerce start-up, which launched operations in the UAE last year, is also in final stages of negotiations with US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) and David Wehner, chief financial officer of Facebook for participation of the current funding round, a source involved with the deal said.

FreshToHome is looking to raise a total of $130 million from these funds and institutional investors, the source said.

When contacted, Shan Kadavil, CEO of FreshToHome, declined to comment on the issue. A spokesperson of InvestCorp Bahrain also declined comment, when contacted by Arabian Business.

“This round of fund raising by FreshToHome will be dominated by the Middle East-based funds,” said a senior investment banking official, who did not wish to be identified because of confidentiality issues.

“It could be possible that the next unicorn from India will be funded by Middle East funds,” the official added.

Sharjah-based Crescent Enterprises and Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair, Emirati businessman and head of the Al Ghurair Group, have already made investments in FreshToHome as angel investors.

Sources said the current round of funding values the Indian e-commerce platform at around $500 million.

Investcorp Bahrain is a leading global manager of alternative investments, including private equity, while Raed Capital is a Dubai sovereign fund.

Mumbai-based Allana Group, which is India’s largest exporter of processed food products and agro commodities, has a major presence in the GCC area.

It is understood that the current round of fundraising has been ‘an investor driven’ one, with the funds approaching the company with their investment proposals.

“Ever since FreshToHome has launched its operations in the UAE, the venture has been on the radar of several funds based in the Middle East region,” a source said.

Sources said part of the capital proposed to be raised in the current round is to be used for funding FreshToHome’s growth plans in the UAE.

Mathew Joseph, co-founder and chief operating officer (COO) of FreshToHome

Mathew Joseph, co-founder and chief operating officer (COO) of FreshToHome, had earlier told Arabian Business that they have plans to have a second plant in the UAE.

The company has recently expanded its processing and storage capacity by 50 percent through extension of facilities at the existing plant at Umm Al Quwain which is now spread over an area of 15,000 sq ft.

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