[Funding Alert] D2C Seafood Unicorn Licious invests $1 Mn in Fresh petfood startup Pawfectly Made

Funding

D2C unicorn Licious has invested $1 million in the fresh pet food startup Pawfectly Made, its first strategic investment, that indicates expanding beyond the core seafood and fresh meat markets.

The startup, however, will continue to function as a separate entity with its production processes and supply chain as Licious comes in as a strategic partner. Leveraging their rich and nuanced understanding of the fresh animal protein sector, Licious will guide and help Pawfectly Made scale faster, said the statement.

Founder Arpita began working on the idea of a pet startup after the COVID-19 lockdown. As the owner of a nine-year-old and a three-year-old dog, both with different dietary requirements, she had to experiment with different ingredients to keep them healthy, which ked her to start Pawfectly Made, a home-cooked meal service startup for pets in 2020.

Arpita Ganesh, Founder & CEO of Pawfectly, said, “I started doing a lot of trials. I started seeing and reading up on the different things that I could do with the foods. When I saw a shift in their activity and energy levels. I realized I was onto something. We saw perfect synergy with Licious when it came to their expertise on supply chain and technology that could help scale Pawfectly Made faster.”

She further said, “Their commitment to superior quality and freshness, deep understanding of the Indian market, and obsession with delivering great value to the customers were key factors that convinced us of the efficacy of this investment and the overall partnership. We are also aligned on Pawfectly Made capturing a much larger market share of pet food in Bengaluru for now and also developing new product ranges, to bring much healthier products for pets across India.”

Pawfectly Made claims that it has disrupted the industry by introducing customizable fresh pet food made with high-quality ingredients allowing convenient options for pet parents to choose from. The Bengaluru-based brand is also the largest D2C brand from India to be certified with FSSC22000, one of the highest food safety certifications in the world.

The fresh pet food segment is at an inflexion point, attracting International and Indian players to introduce product offerings to a fast-expanding user base. According to TechSci Research, the Indian pet food market is growing at a CAGR of 18 per cent and is expected to reach $642 million by the end of 2022.

Despite the growth opportunity that the industry provides, the pet food sector in India has restricted choices and customers have to be largely dependent on pre-packaged processed food.

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