MS Dhoni invests in plant-based Meat Startup Shaka Harry

MS Dhoni invest in Shaka Harry-Founder Talks

MS Dhoni, former captain of the Indian men’s cricket team, has invested in Shaka Harry, a plant-based meat startup.

“We now have a choice to shift to smarter protein alternatives without compromising on taste and texture. The plant protein segment is an exciting consumer space,” said MS Dhoni.

Plant-Based Meat Industry

Startups such as Shaka Harry are part of India’s $30-40 million plant-based protein industry.

Founded by Anand Nagarajan, Sandeep Devgan, Hemalatha Srinivasan, Ruth Renita and Anoop Haridasan, Shaka Harry is a plant-based meat brand retailing a slew of meal and snack products. The startup says that its products are curated around Indian cuisine and palate. 

Reach and Customer Base

“We are serving over 30,000 customers across 10 cities monthly, and expect to triple this number in the next few months. Shaka Harry will also be available on global shelves by the end of this year,” said Anand Nagarajan, cofounder and CEO of Shaka Harry’s parent company Liberate Foods.

Shaka Harry retails its products online via Swiggy Instamart, BigBasket, SPAR and Zepto. The startup has also partnered with supermarts such as Metro and Godrej’s Nature’s Basket to sell products offline. The products are available in Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai, Pune, Ahmedabad and Gurgaon.

The investment comes on the back of Shaka Harry, in July, raising $2 million in its seed funding round led by Better Bite Ventures, Blue Horizon and Panthera Peak Ventures. Dexler Holdings, celebrity Chef Manu Chandra and a group of domestic family offices and angel investors also participated in the round. 

Growth in plant-based Meat over years

Such ventures have been drawing celebrity endorsements around the globe, with rapper Jay-Z investing in Impossible Foods and actor Leonardo DiCaprio in Beyond Meat. Indian cricketer Virat Kohli has also invested in Indian plant-based meat brand Blue Tribe.

Also in September 2021, Pune-based Proeon raised ₹17.5 crore in its seed funding round led by entrepreneur Shaival Desai while GoodDot, one of the first startups in the segment, raised an undisclosed amount from Sixth Sense Ventures. 

Increasing adoption of plant-based foods is also seeing meat delivery companies marking their foray into the segment. On Monday, homegrown meat brand Licious launched its direct-to-consumer, plant-based meat brand, UnCrave.

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