Bandar Foods, LLC is pleased to have secured its first outside financing which will be used to continue the company's meteoric progress in retail and foodservice sales. The convertible debt investment was led by Karl Ulrich, Wharton Business School's Vice Dean of Innovation, and August Capital Partners, a Singapore-based institutional investment firm.
ABOUT BANDAR: Based in San Francisco, Bandar Foods is a food product company that reimagines Indian flavors for everyday American use. With the goal of disrupting the ethnic food aisle, Bandar invented the concept of squeezable Indian chutney and has taken a "tech startup approach" toward rapid scale. The company launched its first two condiments in May 2013 and, within the first year on shelves, has grown to over 1000 stores across the US, Canada and UAE. The company’s products are now sold in such chains such as Whole Foods, Safeway, and Fresh Market. Bandar recently expanded its condiment line and launched its first flavors of poppadum lentil crisps.
BANDAR'S STORY: The idea to create a crossover Indian-American food brand was incubated while the founders, Lalit Kalani and Dan Garblik, were MBA students at Wharton Business School. Kalani and Garblik realized there was a unique opportunity to present exotic flavors in an accessible, exciting way and developed the concept in Professor Ulrich's innovation class. After two years of product iterations, the founders structured their supply chain, impressed the buyers of Whole Foods Markets, and subsequently completed a successful Kickstarter campaign to get moving. During the Kickstarter campaign, the founders met with Sameer Narula, Managing Director of August Capital Partners, who saw global potential in the nascent brand. Garblik said, "Sameer [Narula] immediately saw what we were trying to do. Many food products around India and Asia are not packaged or marketed in a way that makes their use-case obvious to American eaters. Bandar can be a vehicle to bring the world's food cultures together on the same table."
Kalani stated, "We are thrilled to have such accomplished and helpful investors as we grow our company. We met with Sameer and Professor Ulrich multiple times over the past two years as we refined our ideas. They were our first calls when we decided to raise money. We have huge things planned and will use this investment to help us scale and penetrate new sectors." Sameer Narula echoed the founders' sentiments, "Bandar is an exciting platform brand that can be used to spread exotic flavors all over the world. We have been interested in Bandar since their Kickstarter campaign and are excited to support such motivated entrepreneurs as they expand from the US to Asia and beyond."
BANDAR'S FUTURE: Bandar has a number of exciting projects planned for 2014 including new condiment and crisp flavors, growth into US foodservice, and more brand extensions. Kalani said, "Our goal for the immediate future is to use this investment to grow the Bandar brand as widely as possible. We want people to think of our monkey brand when they crave new flavors with their favorite meals." Get ready for more monkeying around with Indian and other exotic flavors!
ABOUT AUGUST CAPITAL PARTNERS: ACP is a Singapore based investment firm that supports early growth businesses that have the potential of disrupting entire industries. ACP co-invests with the government of Singapore, through Spring Seeds Capital. August Capital Partners has no affiliation with similarly named entities or individuals in the US.