ockdown or even otherwise, kids snack regularly. Most of the options available in the market are high in added colours, preservatives or if it is healthy- not tasty enough to appeal to older kids. Out of the 5 meals+snacks that kids eat on an average every day, 2-3 consumption occasions are driven by snacking and the rest by fresh meals. For parents who are busy with work-whether they are in office or at home, we are the no-compromise kids food and nutrition solution with the added benefit of convenience.
We provide moms with a comprehensive solution which includes healthy, tasty packaged foods under the LiL’Goodness brand and fresh meals under the ‘SCoolMeal’ brand. Through this unique combination delivered on a digital platform, we are building a business which will be truly the mom’s nutrition partner and the kid’s taste buddy. For moms, we solve the problem of no compromise nutrition, hygiene and convenience of food options whether at home or at schools- for the kids we ensure great taste while providing adequate nutrition.
The kids food and nutrition is a Rs. 100,000 Crore opportunity considering the top 10 cities. There is great potential for at least 2-3 Rs. 100 Crore start-up brands to emerge in this space.
What made you to start this journey and how is it going so far?
The founding team comes from a healthcare background where we had deep insights into how good nutrition at an early stage makes a huge difference. That coupled with the lack of truly healthy and tasty alternatives which is driven by nutrition science inspired us to start up. The journey thus far has been immensely satisfying with a 4x scale up of the fresh meals business in 6 months and a successful launch of the packaged food brand in Bangalore and online.
The current COVID-19 situation has had its impact- but being a small business, we have been agile enough to come up with relevant pivots to ensure that we continue to grow.
Tell about your recent funding and how it has helped you.
We have received seed funding from a mix of angel and early stage institutional investors. Our fund raise has helped us to build a strong product pipeline for packaged foods, build an improved tech platform for direct to consumer connect and for scaling our offline retail presence, while also acquiring more schools for the fresh meals program.
Can you give one top customer success story?
We have had moms who have called up and said that our crackers are the perfect nachos and potato chips they were looking for- even more so since their kids were demanding more. On the fresh meals side,there are parents who trust us with all the meals of the kids, there are specific instances where moms who are sick and unable to cook on a particular day have called us as saviors for their kids in schools.
What do you look from the Government to help startups?
We are looking for easier access to government procurement channels such as the CSD and CPC channels. These could provide us with a huge relevant consumer base for our products. We are looking for some level of clarity and harmonisation of food nutrition labels, there are manufacturers who are making claims without any proper testing or validation-for our local products to become truly Global we need to ensure world class quality. Access to easier capital to finance lower ticket capex purchases,without too many hassles is also something on the wishlist.
How do you see your org in the next 3 years?
Our vision is to create a modern day Nestle out of India- a truly global brand built on principles of scientific nutrition and taste for kids. We see ourselves establishing a line of market leading products and pioneering new categories for kids, using digital as a key channel of engagement. We see ourselves being present in the top 10 cities, digitally as well through a strong offline presence.
As a startup, what are the top 2 challenges you face now?
Cash flow is of course a challenge, especially since schools are shut. Creating a new brand in the minds of the consumers during the times of COVID has thrown some interesting challenges and opportunities for us. We have had to pivot to ensure that revenue recovery stays on course to reduce cash burn, while ensuring that critical initiatives get enough attention and investments.
What are the areas that you would like to get mentored?
We would love to get mentored on building exciting digital interfaces for improving food experience for kids and their parents- through IoT, mobile engagement and gamification.
We would also appreciate any mentorship on retail distribution and sales, especially maximising the use of hyperlocal channels.
What is your contribution to society?
These are early days but yet we have put in our best to make an impact. On Teachers’ Day we appreciated the efforts of our gurus by providing a free snack and gift to ~ 7000 teachers in Bangalore. On children’s day we provided a healthy snack to ~ 33,000 kids across different schools. The most impactful though has been our initiative during COVID times when we provided ~50,000 nutritious meals to underprivileged families in partnership with Swiggy.