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Tasty Bite may raise $12m to fuel growth

Tasty Bite may raise $12m to fuel growth

Author | Source: The Economic Times | Saturday, Jul 08,2006 10:04 AM

Tasty Bite may raise $12m to fuel growth

A host of private equity (PE) funds and strategic investors may look for a foothold in Tasty Bite Eatables, as the company could look at raising about $10-12m (Rs 45-54 crore) to propel its growth strategy.

Tasty Bite, arguably India's biggest ready-to-eat (RTE) brand selling abroad, is already in talks with investment bankers for raising funds to pursue “a discontinuous growth strategy”. However, the company, when contacted, said these talks were only informal discussions, and it has not mandated anyone for raising fresh capital.

The cash that the company plans to raise is significant in that Tasty Bite and its majority shareholder, the US-headquartered Preferred Brands, have a consolidated turnover in the range of Rs 70-75 crore.

Sources said the company could see a significant equity rejig, if it goes ahead with fund raising plans. The company refused to comment further on the matter.

The Pune-based Tasty Bite caters only to the international market. Its range of products, which cover Indian, Thai and Italian cuisines are marketed through Preferred Brands in the US.

Ashok Vasudevan and Karthik Kilachand, both ex-Pepsi employees, are the majority shareholders in Preferred Brands which, in turn, owns around 75% stake in Tasty Bite.

A few years back , Tasty Bite took a decision to exit the domestic RTE market to pursue international opportunities, and has significant presence in countries like US and Australia.

The company has no immediate plans to take a re-look at the domestic market as the size of the RTE pie still remains small. Its existing business is witnessing 30-35% year-on-year jump.

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