We are excited to announce our investment in Farmley, where co-founders Akash Sharma and Abhishek Agarwal are on a mission to build India’s most loved dry fruits and nuts brand.
We love Akash, Abhishek, and the hyper-focused Farmley team!
The founders Akash Sharma and Abhishek Agarwal are on a mission to build the best quality dry fruits and nuts brand with complete backward integration. The team has spent four years working on the backend; establishing deep back-end linkages with domestic and international farming communities as well as setting up 5 processing units to produce the highest quality products. The founders have built a stellar team with a strong culture of experimentation, phenomenal speed of execution, and laser-sharp focus on customer pain points.
A large growing market that is transitioning from unorganised to organised.
The Indian dry fruits and nuts market is valued at INR 50,000 crores (~US$ 6 bn) which is growing at 9% CAGR. However, 95% of the market is unorganized. This market has a wide prevalence of loose, unbranded, and unpackaged products which aren’t always hygienically processed and often carry a risk of adulteration. As in other CPG categories, we expect to see a shift from this unorganised landscape to an organised and branded play. We believe there will be several large-scale brands that will emerge in this segment in the next 10 years. Dry fruits and nuts are embedded in Indian culture and are regularly consumed in households. Beyond the snacking occasions and widely understood health benefits, dry fruits are extensively gifted during Diwali, weddings, and other celebrations.
We love healthy snacks!
Farmley’s vision is consistent with DSGCP’s long term thesis on building a portfolio of brands in the healthy snacking category. Past investments include Epigamia, Raw Pressery, Pip & Nut, and Saraf Foods. We believe dry fruits, nuts, and their derivatives will benefit from this growing preference for healthy snacks. In fact, not only are dry fruits and nuts the largest segment in the food category on marketplaces like Amazon and Flipkart, but they’re also growing at a rapid pace.
Given that dry fruits and nuts are nutritious, gluten-free, vegan, and very friendly to the Indian palate, many derived products such as bars, laddus, and bakery products are already popular. As in western markets, we expect India to see a massive demand for dry fruits and nuts in multiple formats like on-the-go sachets, snack bars, breakfast bars, bliss balls, and nut butter cups infused with nuts and dried fruits.
Farmley is focused on building the leading insurgent brand in the category.
As the market transitions from unorganised to organised, Farmley has developed a playbook that will build the brand around 4 core pillars: trust, better for you, taste, and innovation.
Trust: With fully integrated sourcing and manufacturing, Farmley has control and visibility of the product across the value chain. This allows Farmley to speak about traceability and build trust around the quality and hygiene of the product.
Better For You: Farmley’s products contain important nutrients such as proteins, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and dietary fiber and are frequently recommended by doctors and dieticians as a healthier snacking option.
Taste: The company is focused on taste being the primary proposition of all product launches. Farmley has experimented with innovative flavours like Thai chilli cashew and thandai nutty milk mix. The focus on taste is very important as all successful healthy snacking brands in our portfolio and beyond have great-tasting products.
Innovation: Farmley is working on several new-to-market products that will leverage product and packaging innovation to deliver exciting, tasty, and healthy snacks to the Indian consumer.
Farmley has strong product development and innovation capabilities
With a focus on new product development, Farmley is always looking at how it can include new ingredients, new processes, and new packaging, to create different categories of healthy snacks. From plain dry fruits and nuts to trail mixes, bars, balls, and other on-the-go options, Farmley is developing a portfolio of snacking products for the modern Indian consumer. Beyond the traditional formats of nuts and dry fruits, Farmley has experimented with new flavours and products like peri-peri oat chips, Thai chilli cashew, thandai nutty milk mix, and 8-in-1 berry mix. Farmley’s take on roasted makhana with 5 delicious flavours has contemporized an age-old favourite. Makhana, also known as fox nuts or lotus seeds, is low in cholesterol, fat, and sodium—making it perfect for healthy snacking. Most recently, Farmley launched the world’s first Makhana pasta.
Exponential growth with strong capital efficiency!
The founders have built the business in an extremely capital-efficient manner in a category that is notorious for poor margins. This feat is even more impressive as the brand has grown exponentially since its launch. The brand has scaled its revenues by 10x in the last 18 months! Akash and Abhishek are focused on building the business sustainably and with a strong focus on the bottom line. We are privileged to partner with them on this journey!
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