Curefoods makes five more acquisitions to bolster house-of-brands strategy

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Curefoods, a cloud kitchen startup, has acquired five more brands to strengthen its direct-to-consumer play and create a house of brands on its platform.

The company now owns more than 20 brands in its portfolio and will look to take it up to as many as 25 by the middle of this year. The Bengaluru-based startup has bought brands like Juno’s Pizza and White Kitchens to strengthen its Tier-II presence and expand to new geographies. The company will also invest to grow, market and brand these businesses.

Curefoods, which commenced operations in 2020, operates brands like EatFit, Yumlane, Aligarh House Biryani and Masalabox. The company has been acquiring, incubating and licensing multiple cloud-kitchen brands in the past few months.

The startup is run solely by Ankit Nagori, a former senior executive at Flipkart who branched out from Curefit—a company he cofounded with Myntra founder Mukesh Bansal after leaving the Walmart-owned ecommerce firm. In an earlier interview, Nagori told ET that Curefood was looking to acquire a mix of smaller brands with a Rs 8-10 crore annual revenue run rate and those that have the potential to scale nationally and become Rs 100-crore businesses.

Cloud kitchens, which are cooking facilities devoted to the preparation of delivery-only food, have flourished on the back of the pandemic, as ET reporter earlier. The number of cloud kitchens on Swiggy tripled between FY19 and FY21 and doubled on Zomato from January 2020. Industry leader Rebel Foods, the owner of Faasos, Behrouz Biryani and OvenStory, recently turned unicorn.

“It’s convenient for a restaurant owner or brand owner to now create a good product and sell,” Nagori told ET in that Nov. 9 interview. “Swiggy and Zomato have built large businesses. Exactly what you had seen in Flipkart a few years back where we had a great marketplace and hundreds and thousands of sellers across India benefiting from it. This is now playing out in the food category.”

Curefoods expects its revenue to grow 50% quarter-on-quarter with these brands coming into its fold. Nagori did not offer specific details on the company’s current revenue.

“We are excited to kickstart 2022 with five new brands on board making us a powerhouse of 20-odd leading food brands,” Nagori said in a prepared statement on Tuesday. “To cater to multiple eating occasions, cuisines, flavour profiles and regional nuances, we are bringing on a plethora of such companies—each a strong contender in its space with great products to offer. Our goal is to equip them further with our tech and business expertise to enable them to continue serving up some great dishes for customers.”

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