Cold Storage Maker, Ecozen Raises 6.2 cr (US$1 Million) from Omnivore Partners
April 7, 2015
Ecozen, maker of solar powered cold storage units that are sold or rented to Indian farmers who can then store their perishable crops instead of having to sell at low prices, has raised 6.2 crore (US$1 million) from Omnivore Partners. In exchange for the investment, Omnivore will receive a minor stake in the business and will have representation on the company’s board of directors.
Ecozen will use the funds to expand its market reach and to increase production capacity.
“Our aim is to use the funding to reach critical mass and invest in manufacturing of the product….We are reaching out to more areas in Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh. We will also be using the funding to improve the business structure and supply chain including logistics and production,” Devendra Gupta, co-founder of Ecozen, tells The Economic Times.
The company is seeking to scale up its business structure – selling units to large farmers and institutions from whom small farmers can rent the units. The company has sold six units and 125 solar pumps through its pilot program to date.
Mumbai-based early stage venture capital firm, Omnivore Partners funded Ecozen because it sees its business as providing cold storage to India’s small farmers who find it difficult to access larger, regional cold storage systems, creating significant reduction in waste and spoilage of fruits and vegetables on a local level.
In addition, upon this investment, Villgro, which invested in Ecozen in March 2014 will exit the company with a profitable return.
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