Pune-based food ingredient start-up Proeon, announced it has recently raised US$2.4 million as seed capital in a funding round led by entrepreneur Shaival Desai.
The round also saw participation from Flowstate Ventures, Peak Sustainability Venture Fund I (executed by Samir Shah on behalf of the Fund), Waoo Partners (Pratul Shroff family office), and other angel investors.
Existing investor Sanjaya Mariwala, MD of OmniActive Health Technologies Limited also participated in this round.
According to the company, newly-raised capital will be utilized to grow the company, setting up a research lab in the Netherlands, Europe, scaling up production, expanding the team, and filing IP.
Speaking on the funding, founders Kevin Parekh and Ashish Korde said, “By relentlessly focusing on innovation and partnering with large global brands as well as startups, we are working towards creating food products that are hassle-free to formulate, and are loved by consumers. Our immediate focus would be expanding presence in the markets of North America and Europe, where the shift to plant proteins is accelerating at an unprecedented pace.”
Founded in 2018, Proeon specializes in high quality plant protein ingredient innovation aimed at making it easier for food companies to make tastier and healthier plant-based meat, dairy, and egg replacement products.
Proeon’s current product portfolio includes Mung Bean Protein, Chickpea Protein, Amaranth Protein, and Hemp Seed Protein.
Research from the Good Food Institute India indicates that $3.1 billion was invested in the broader smart protein sector globally in 2020, up 3x from the year prior as enthusiasm for sustainable and secure protein supply chains deepened during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Currently, the company is working with brands from Europe, North America, and Southeast Asia to build more sustainable and healthier plant-based alternatives such as highly functional plant-based egg-replacement products, clean-label burgers, patties, and alternative dairy products.
In collaboration with its partners and customers, the company is also aiming to save more than 170 billion litres of water and eliminate about 150 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions by replacing wasteful, animal-based foods with plant-based alternatives.
The company is the only Indian start-up in the Sustainable Food Systems cohort of global accelerator program MassChallenge Switzerland 2021. It is associated with leading research institutes such as Wageningen University of Research, Netherlands, and the Centre for Food Technology & Research Institute, Mysore, India.