Fireside Ventures, an early-stage investor exclusively focused on consumer brands, has announced the first close of their second fund, which has a target of $100 million. The total commitments have crossed $60 million to date.
Fund II is anchored by Indian and global investors and institutions. The participation by global partners and the recent investment by French personal care company L'Oréal is a validation of their confidence in new-age consumer brands and the strong performance of the fund and its portfolio companies.
Fireside has also announced its first investment from Fund II in Gynoveda, a personal care brand built around the core objective of using Ayurveda in the area of menstrual health. The company has built the world’s first ‘period bot’, which helps diagnose specific menstrual issues and prescribes a personalised regime of Ayurvedic supplements to help alleviate the same.
On the second fund and new investment, Kanwaljit Singh, Managing Partner, Fireside Ventures, said, “The Indian startup ecosystem for consumer brands is evolving rapidly and we are seeing significant new opportunities to build large consumer brands across multiple sectors and themes. We have witnessed a lot of interest from domestic and global investors, including family offices and large institutions, in investing in Fireside Fund II.”
“The second fund aims to double down on the success of the first fund, and follow the same strategy of investing in exciting young millennial brands and helping them with strong ecosystem support. We are also starting to see credible opportunities for Indian brands to go global,” he said.
Expanding and diversifying the portfolio
Fireside achieved the final closing of its first fund in February 2018 with a corpus of $50 million. They received investment interest from over 2,000 companies and deeply evaluated over 400 of them before making 18 investments. The deal pipeline was across the consumer wallet.
About 90 percent of the investible corpus of Fund I has been deployed and the remaining 10 percent is reserved for follow-ons. The fund has invested in diverse companies catering to the consumer segment, including boAt audio, Mama Earth, Vahdam Teas, Design Café, Alpha Vector (Frog Bikes) and Yoga Bar.
In terms of exits, one of Fireside’s early investments, Kwik 24, was acquired by Bigbasket in 2018.
“We are expanding and developing the portfolio across consumer wallets and we believe brands in superfoods, personalised beauty, fashion, and personal care will be the new frontrunners in the consumer segment. The space is currently unexplored and there lies an opportunity for a lot of startups to enter this business," Kanwaljit said.
Facebook has also tied up with Fireside Ventures for its SMB Ecosystem Incubator Programme, which underpins the fund’s commitment to growing the ecosystem.
(Edited by Teja Lele Desai)
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