4 Successful F&B Startups Backed by Shark Tank India Season One

Let’s find out why the Sharks opened their wallet to these four aspiring startups. 

Within India’s bustling entrepreneurial scene, where creativity knows no bounds, several food and beverage (F&B) startups are making waves. Today, we bring to you four F&B pioneers backed by Shark Tank India—the Indian iteration of the globally renowned reality TV show Shark Tank. 

These startups are introducing groundbreaking food tech, reimagining how we think about beverage packaging and weaving healthy ingredients into our daily lives. Let’s take a closer look at their stories and offerings to see why they have captivated not just the Sharks—the panel of investors on the show—but also viewers nationwide.

  1. TagZ Foods 

Image from TagZ Foods’s official website 

 

Founded in 2019 by Anish Basu Roy and Sagar Bhalotia, Bengaluru-based TagZ Foods is committed to challenging the norms of traditional snacking. Utilizing a unique “popping” food technology, their chips offer a guilt-free indulgence, boasting 50% less fat compared to conventional options. They are also free from cholesterol, gluten, trans-fat, artificial colors and preservatives.

Appearing on Shark Tank India’s first season in 2022, TagZ Foods clinched an investment deal of INR70 lakhs (approximately US$84,000) for a 2.75% equity stake from Ashneer Grover, the former co-founder and managing director of fintech giant BharatPe.

By 2023, the company expanded to a network of 5,000 retail stores and collaborated with over 30 e-commerce platforms, including Indian online grocery delivery services Swiggy Instamart and Blinkit. In FY23, TagZ Foods reported a 2.5X revenue jump to INR23 crore (US$2.7 million) from INR8.97 crore (US$1.08 million) in FY22. Continuing its upward trajectory, TagZ Foods secured a substantial US$2 million in pre-series A funding in May 2023

  1. Skippi 

Image from Skippi’s official website 

 

Ravi and Anuja Kabra from Hyderabad have turned a simple childhood delight into a nationwide craze with Skippi Ice Pops, the first ice pop brand in India. Reimagining the traditional “gola” or “chuski” (shredded ice shaped like a half-cylinder), Skippi Ice Pops are sold in liquid form, ready to freeze, made with RO water and natural flavors. They are available in a delightful array of options, such as raspberry, bubblegum, mango and cola. 

Skippi’s appearance on Shark Tank India’s first season was a turning point, securing an all-shark deal of INR1.2 crore (approximately US$144,000) for 15% equity. This investment catalyzed a 40X growth in sales and monthly sales of INR2 crore (US$214,000) for the startup.

Post the show, in October 2022, the Kabras introduced the Skippi Freezer Bike, an innovative electric two-wheeler developed in collaboration with BIKEWO, to bring their icy delights directly to customers’ doorsteps. The brand is also broadening its product offerings into the snacks and bakery sector, introducing cream rolls and cornsticks in July 2023

As reported by Business Insider India in January 2023, Skippi is looking to raise an additional INR4 crore (around US$482,000). Currently, the startup boasts an availability in over 1,500 outlets in Hyderabad and 8,000 outlets nationwide.

  1. In a Can 

Image from In A Can’s Instagram  

 

The lockdown of 2020 sparked a moment of ingenuity for hotel management alumni Sameer and Viraj, leading to the creation of In a Can—India’s first ready-to-drink cocktail in a can. Following nine months of meticulous research, the startup introduced a lineup of five flavors, including classics and innovations like rum latte, all while maintaining a low-calorie content. 

Priced attractively at INR140 (USD$1.69), In a Can quickly gained popularity in regions like Goa and Uttar Pradesh, with sales reaching INR60 lakhs (about US$72,000) as of 2022. The brand’s appearance on Shark Tank India season one resulted in an all-shark deal, securing INR1 crore (US$120,000) for ten percent equity.

  1. Beyond Water 

Image from Beyond Water’s official website

 

Devang and Shachi Singhania’s Beyond Water was founded in 2020 with a vision to infuse plain beverages like water, soda, tea and coffee with a splash of flavors. This innovative liquid water enhancer, priced at INR300 (US$3.62) with flavors like lemon mint, mango peach and ginger lime, caught the Shark’s attention on Shark Tank India’s first season. After the founders’ pitch, the startup secured a deal of INR75 lakhs (US$90,000) for 15% equity from two Sharks—Namita Thapar, Executive Director of Emcure Pharmaceuticals, and Aman Gupta, co-founder and CMO of boAt. 

Now, Beyond Water has diversified its offerings to include healthy and clean beverages like cocktail mixers, vitamins, ice teas and garnishes, boasting an annual revenue of around US$311,000 as of 2023.

The impactful journey of India’s F&B innovators

These startups’ journeys from securing investments on Shark Tank India to navigating the challenges of expansion exemplify the resilience and innovative spirit of India’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.

With each bite and sip, these startups are reshaping India’s F&B landscape, demonstrating that the country’s entrepreneurial zeal is more vibrant than ever. Their success stories underscore a vital message: India’s spirit of entrepreneurship is thriving, continuously adapting and ready to explore new horizons. With each innovation, these startups are not only changing how we consume but also inspiring a new generation of entrepreneurs to dream big and make their mark.

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Header Image from IMDB 

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