FreshToHome.com, the world’s largest online fresh fish and meat store announced its expansion in Middle East region by expressing its intend to invest AED 50 million in UAE and Saudi Arabia over next two years. The company’s regional expansion is supported by CE-Ventures, the corporate venture capital platform of UAE-headquartered multinational company Crescent Enterprises.
Founded in 2015, FreshToHome.com is the world’s largest e-commerce platform for fish and meat, serving 1 million customers across Bengaluru, Mumbai, Pune, New Delhi, Chennai and parts of Kerala, with 45,000 orders per day. Following a “soft launch” in the UAE a few months ago, FreshToHome.com has seen rapid acceptance for its business model, and is already making more than 1,000 deliveries per day across the country, placing it among the top 5 e-grocers in UAE.
The planned investment will support infrastructure development and user acquistions, including backward integration on farming, with FreshToHome acting as a microfinacier to fishermen and farmers, and working closely with them to deploy the latest technoliges to increase yields. The company currently has a food processing and storage facility in Umm Al Quwain, with a production capacity of 30 tonnes a day, and it is looking to add another facility in Dubai.
Shan Kadavil, CEO and Co-Founder, FreshToHome, said “FreshToHome.com’s value proposition of offering 100% fresh fish and meat direct to your doorstep, free of added chemicals and full of flavor, has already resonated well with the UAE’s discerning customer base, who want quality and convenience, but in a responsible manner keeping sustainability at the heart of our direct farm to fork sourcing. With the support of our investor base, including lead investor in the Series A funding round CE-Ventures, we are investing heavily in the GCC market, and we aim to be the largest e-commerce fish and meat retailer in the region differentiated by quality and range of the products that we offer.”
“Our UAE operation has already proven to be a huge success, representing our fastest-growing market. UAE is a haven for food lovers and the demographics are ideally suited to our business operations. We see the country as the perfect platform to develop our business and launch operations in other GCC countries, especially Saudi Arabia.”
Tushar Singhvi, Director of CE-Ventures, said “The market potential of FreshToHome.com’s UAE expansion is clear as this is an innovative new way of selling fresh fish and meat in the UAE. FreshToHome.com also offers a better way of sourcing meat and seafood, with its technology enabling it to deal directly with fishermen and farmers, and make fresh, chemcial-free produce more easily available. Freshtohome.com today does over 1000 tons of fish farming in India, using the most modern technology such as aquaponics. As a UAE-based company, we consider food security for the country to be of utmost priority and we will help facilitate FreshToHome.com to bring their superior fish farming technology to the UAE. Food security, along with the huge market potential of FreshToHome.com in the UAE, were important factors in our decision to be a strategic investor in the company.”
While FreshToHome.com sources most of its locally available fish from the UAE coasts, its commodity exchange sourcing platform enables the company to reach a network of more than 1,500 farmers and fishermen across the world, thereby differentiating in the range and quality of products offered to its customers. By using predictive analytics, machine learning and artifical intelligence, FreshToHome.com can disintermediate the supply chain, cutting out middlemen and reducing wastage; farmers and fishermen offer their produce directly through a smart-phone based app, enabling delivery times to Dubai within 18 to 24 hours from catch even from remote coasts in India via air transport.