Cloud kitchen brand Rebel Foods has raised $125 million in a Series D round, backed by returning investors such as Indian VC Lightbox, US VC firm Sequoia Capital and Dubai-based Evolvence. After its investment, US banking giant Goldman Sachs will have a 4.74% stake in the company, according to Inc42. Southeast Asia’s leading ride-hailing major Go-Jek also infused $5 million in August 2019, through its venture capital arm Go Ventures. Following the funding round, Rebel Foods now has a valuation of an estimated $500 million, based on figures from Indian Internet economy platform, Entrackr. This makes it the third-most valued food tech firm in India, after Swiggy and Zomato.
With the fresh injection of capital, the Pune-based foodtech startup will be expanding to Dubai and Southeast Asia’s most populous nation, Indonesia. This is before it further extends its reach to the rest of the region. Rebel Foods will also ramp up its network of kitchens to 500 from its current 200 to keep up with increased demand.
AFN has reached out to Rebel Foods for comment. Stay tuned for updates.
Snapshot: About Rebel Foods’ Series D
Breaking down the figures, Rebel and Go-Jek will set up a third of the new cloud kitchens (100 of them) in Indonesia to serve up dishes like biryani, pizza and local dishes like nasi goreng. As for Dubai, Rebel plans to open 20 kitchens there by year-end. In an earlier conversation with ET, CEO of Rebel Foods, Jaydeep Barman said the company was investing another $30-40 million in infrastructure, expansion and automation, while also doubling down on its in-house brands.
Rebel has come a long way since being founded in 2010. It was earlier known as Faasos Food Services, before being renamed in 2018. It started out as a quick-service restaurant and is now a multi-brand cloud kitchen model that has established brands like Oven Story, Firangi Bake, Mandarin Oak, Kettle & Eggs, and Behrouz under Rebel Foods.
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Snapshot: What is a cloud kitchen?
Cloud kitchens are on the rise across the world, and many of the food delivery startups such as Deliveroo and Zomato are on track to expand to the space. Also known as ghost, or dark kitchens, they are usually a restaurant kitchen that accepts orders only through online ordering systems, and do not offer any dine-in facilities. Their modus operandi involves tie-ups with food ordering portals such as Biryani By Kilo, Box8, FreshMenu, UberEats, InnerChef and Swiggy. The main advantage of having a cloud kitchen is that one company can start many brands under one roof all at the same time, cutting down extensively on costs.