This Bengaluru-based Gen Z startup is betting on healthy snack options

Founded in 2019, Bengaluru-based startup TagZ Foods claims to make healthier potato chips. The startup, which competes with the likes of Pringles and KETTLE in the premium potato chips category, is now eyeing overseas markets.

Bengaluru-based TagZ Foods was launched in 2019 by Anish Basu Roy and Sagar Bhalotia with a mission to help urban Gen Z consumers eat healthy and lead a more active lifestyle.

“We are making sure that consumers no longer have to choose between the fried fatty chips they love and the boring health bars and makhanas. We continue to launch innovative and better-for-you versions of the snacks that consumers already love – chips, dips, chocolates, and cookies,” says Anish Basu Roy, Co-founder of TagZ Foods.

Sustainability is among the top agendas of the brand. 

“At the same time, we are a plastic neutral brand as well. We recycle the same amount of plastic that we generate. As a GenZ brand, we want to make sure we leave the planet in a better shape than what we inherited it in,” Anish adds.

TagZ launched in the market with a range of popped potato chips that claim to have 50 percent less fat than fried ones. Popping, the co-founder says, is a new technology, which involves using high temperature and pressure on the finest quality potato. 

“We have two ranges of popped chips – one is a range of classic Indian flavours such as Masala, Cream Onion, and Salt, and the other is a range of international bar snacks such as Beer n Barbeque, Thai Vodka Tom Yum, and Italian Wine n Cheese,” Anish says.

“All our popped potato chips have no cholesterol, no trans fat, no artificial colors or preservatives, no palm oil and no gluten,” he adds.

The startup has also recently launched its range of international gourmet dips in flavours such as pepper jack, garlic aioli, ranch, and chipotle.

TagZ claims to have sold nearly 50 lakh units in the last 18 months. “More importantly, we have helped improve the snacking habits of lakhs of consumers in India,” says the entrepreneur.

The startup operates on an omni-channel model with an equal focus on consumers buying from its own website, ecommerce/hyperlocal channels such as Swiggy Instamart, Amazon, Bigbasket, Blinkit (earlier, Grofers), etc., and various premium offline stores as well.

“We are available in over 30+ online platforms including our website and over 2,000 premium offline stores such as Nature’s Basket, Shell Select, Wellness Forever, and Ratnadeep, among others across the country,” says Anish.

The team

Anish is based in (and in love with) Bengaluru and has worked with brands like Nokia and Coca-Cola in various sales and marketing leadership positions across Asia. Prior to TagZ, he had co-founded and was the CEO of Shotang, a tech-enabled retail distribution platform. 

He has also been an active mentor with Coworks Foundry and the TiE YE programme.

Sagar is an IIT Bombay alum with over seven years of experience across startups such as, Freshmenu, HealthifyMe, Oyo, and Quikr. He brings product thinking and is a design and creative asset to the team.

“It's a very lean team of only 19 young folks who have built this business thus far. We started with less than Rs 1 crore of initial investment, and managed to overcome initial product development challenges and COVID-19-led challenges,” says Anish.

The way ahead

TagZ, the co-founder says, is focussed on the top 30-40 million households across the country to begin with, alongside exports opportunities as well. 

“We are looking at building the largest premium snack brand across categories of chips, dips, cookies, and chocolates. While we believe there is a clear opportunity to build a Rs 1,000 crore brand in these categories in the longer term, we are focussed on hitting a profitable Rs 100 crore revenue mark in the immediate term,” says Anish.

“Our primary competition is with brands such as Pringles and KETTLE in the premium potato chips category, and Cornitos and Doritos in the adjacent nachos category,” he adds.

The startup has so far raised nearly $1 million from 9Unicorns, Venture Catalysts, Agility Ventures, Dexter Angels, and marquee angel investors such as Arjun Vaidya (Venture Lead - India, Verlinvest) and Umang Bedi (Co-founder, VerSe Innovation).

“Our sales volume has grown 30x in the last 18 months since inception; our net revenues in the last six months have grown 4x,” Anish says.

“About 40 percent of our sales have come from repeat customers at a best-in-class average order value of Rs 711. These repeat customers of TagZ Foods have returned to buy 3.2X times more of the items on offer over the last eight months from the company’s website,” he adds.

Last fiscal, TagZ has generated a revenue of Rs 1.5 crore and this fiscal year, the startup is eyeing for Rs 15 crore ARR (annual recurring revenue).

TagZ has over 70 distributors across the country and is available in stores in most major metros in the country, and even in Tier-II towns such as Aizawl, Imphal, Guwahati, Pathankot, and Ludhiana, among others. 

 “We are looking at creating the largest urban GenZ snack brand, which will forever change the way consumers snack on potato chips, gourmet dips, chocolates, and cookies. We intend to achieve this through our innovative products, sustainable packaging, and truly international brand,” Anish says.

TagZ is present in over 12 cities in India and has recently started exporting to markets such as the UAE.

Edited by Affirunisa Kankudti