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Business News/ Companies / News/  Third Wave Coffee raises $35 million in Series C round
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Third Wave Coffee raises $35 million in Series C round

Creaegis led the round for the quick-service coffee and food brand, with participation from existing investor WestBridge Capital

Third Wave Coffee raises $35 million in Series C roundPremium
Third Wave Coffee raises $35 million in Series C round

MUMBAI: Quick-service coffee and food brand, Third Wave Coffee, has raised $35 million in a Series C funding round led by Creaegis. Existing investor WestBridge Capital as well as angel investors also participated.

The firm seeks to deploy the capital for its pan-India expansion, strengthen its supply chain, enhance technological capabilities and for strategic investments in technology, it said in a statement.

“Creaegis led our Series C fundraise, with participation from Westbridge Capital and angel investor Sujeet Kumar, besides others," said Sushant Goel, co-founder and chief executive, Third Wave Coffee. “We believe the coffee-first QSR industry is one of the fastest-growing consumer categories in the country. We have grown 5x in the last year and strategically expanded our footprint across India. Going forward, we will double down on technology and product innovation to deliver a superior cafe experience across India."

Established by Goel, Ayush Bathwal, and Anirudh Sharma in 2017, the firm currently has over 100 stores, in line with the rapid growth of India’s coffee and food industry.

The coffee industry in India is projected to surpass $4.2 billion, with coffee retail chains likely to reach $850 million by 2025.

“Third Wave is emerging as one of the most loved brands, answering to India’s aspirations. We will support its management team in next phase of growth, using a digital-first approach to build an iconic company," Prakash Parthasarathy, Creaegis managing partner and chief executive, and partner Nitish Bandi, said.

In May 2022, WestBridge Capital led a $21 million Series B round in the firm, with participation from marque angel investors.

Sandeep Singhal, managing partner at WestBridge Capital, said: “We have been impressed with the tremendous traction and customer love that Third Wave Coffee generated across cities. We will strengthen our partnership with the company and work towards scaling both footprint and customer experience manifold."

Third Wave has a presence in Bengaluru, Mumbai, Gurgaon, Delhi, Pune, Noida, Hyderabad, Coonoor and Chandigarh.

While India has historically been known as a tea-drinking nation, coffee aficionados are rapidly emerging in major cities. It all started in 1996 when VG Siddharth launched Cafe Coffee Day on Brigade Road in Bengaluru. Till then, the coffee experience was confined to traditional filter coffee establishments.

Nonetheless, the watershed moment for Indian coffee culture materialised in 2012, when the iconic American coffee giant Starbucks, in collaboration with the Tata Group, unveiled its first store at Fort in Mumbai. In just 11 years, Starbucks India has notched an annual revenue exceeding 1,000 crore.

Starbucks’ entry also paved the way for the emergence of numerous speciality coffee brands, such as Blue Tokai, The Flying Squirrel, Indian Bean, and Sleepy Owl.

Furthermore, the Indian coffee landscape witnessed the entry of international players like Tim Hortons and Pret A Manger this year, indicating a dynamic and evolving coffee culture.

Currently, new cafe chains specialising in single-estate brews and roasts are enticing consumers with more flavorful and elevated coffee-based beverages. This trend is leading coffee enthusiasts to experiment with new brews at home. Both new-age coffee chains and established brands are capitalizing on this opportunity.

This week, Nestle announced plans to expand its coffee factory capacity, citing increasing demand for its products in the future. Meanwhile, Bollywood actor Deepika Padukone has acquired a stake in Blue Tokai Coffee Roasters. Starbucks, on the other hand, has been adapting its offerings to cater to a wider range of consumers in India.

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Gaurav Laghate
Gaurav Laghate is the chief of Mint's Consumer Bureau that covers FMCG, consumer durables, retail, media, advertising, hospitality, luxury and the business of sports. An accomplished business journalist with a career spanning over 15 years, he has reported on the significant advancements in the media and entertainment industry, as well as the business of sports. Beyond his role as a journalist, Gaurav is recognised as a steadfast observer of the media landscape, having spoken at several industry events and panels.
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Published: 28 Sep 2023, 04:22 PM IST
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