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Rebel Foods doubles topline in fiscal 2019, but losses balloon by more than 75%

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Rebel Foods, which owns and operates multi-brand cloud kitchen brands, more than doubled its topline in financial year 2018-19, but losses ballooned, as the Mumbai-based company increased its bouquet of offerings, while also continuing to focus on geographical growth.

For the year ended March 31, 2019, Rebel Foods, which owns and operates an estimated 2,100 internet restaurants and 275 cloud kitchens spread across three countries, posted net loss of Rs 130.64 crore, up from net loss of Rs 74.44 crore in fiscal 2018.

Other expenses, which typically also includes marketing and promotional spends, among other items, rose 147% to Rs 191.81 crore, as the company began expanding at a rapid pace across South-East Asia and the Middle-East, particularly in Indonesia and Dubai.

Separately, cost of materials consumed and employee benefit expenses also rose 105% and 39%, to touch Rs 144 crore and Rs 92.27 crore, respectively, for the year ended March 31, 2019.

The growth also came lock step with the company announcing $125 million funding round in August earlier this year, from a clutch of global investors, a list that includes New York-based technology-focused hedge fund Coatue Management, Go Ventures, an investment arm of Indonesian ride-hailing firm Go-Jek, and Goldman Sachs, at a reported vacation of $500-$525 million.

In an earlier conversation with ET, Barman had said the company planned to invest $30-$40 million in infrastructure, expansion and automation, while also doubling down on its nine in-house brands, which includes Faasos, Behrouz Biriyani, Oven Story, Firangi Bake and Mandarin Oak, among others.

Total revenue for fiscal 2019 came in at Rs 310.37 crore, more than doubling from financial year 2018-19, when it recorded a topline of Rs 149.05 crore.

Rebel Foods also competes with the likes of Naspers-backed Swiggy and Zomato, both of which also operate their own cloud kitchen infrastructure. The model, with its delivery-only kitchen setup, allows companies to drastically reduce their real estate and labour costs, while keeping the window of expanding brands and offerings fast.

Additionally, earlier this month, ET, citing sources, reported that Travis Kalanick-founded City Storage Systems has discreetly begun building an India team to drive the Uber co-founder’s new venture, which runs delivery-only kitchens called CloudKitchens.

Incidentally, Kalanick’s City Storage Systems had also snapped up a small stake in Rebel Foods earlier this month.

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