IIT Kanpur-backed organic wellness start-up Phool.co raises $8mn
Phool.co, an organic wellness start-up supported by IIT, Kanpur, has raised $8mn in fresh funding from Sixth Sense Ventures. The money was raised in a Series A round, which also saw participation from the existing investors, including Bollywood actor Alia Bhatt and IAN Fund.
Phool.co, an organic wellness start-up supported by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur, has raised $8mn in fresh funding from Sixth Sense Ventures.
The money was raised in a Series A round, which also saw participation from the existing investors, including Bollywood actor Alia Bhatt and IAN Fund.
Phool.co is touted as India’s first biomaterial start-up to innovate in the traditional incense industry. It is India’s first wellness brand to obtain the coveted Fair for Life - Fairtrade, and Ecocert Organic & Natural certifications.
Incubated at the Start-up Incubation and Innovation Centre (SIIC), IIT Kanpur, Phool.co hogged the limelight with their incense made from flower waste.
The company has raised money in this round to build depth in the $23bn global home fragrance market and enter the aromatherapy-based personal-care category.
Earlier, Phool.co had launched Fleather, a breakthrough material that performs and feels exactly like leather, but is non-animal and non-plastic. With this indigenous alternative, it plans to transform the $550bn global leather goods industry.
So far, Phool.co has signed pilots with some of the world’s leading fashion brands. Awarded the Best Innovation in Vegan Fashion by PETA, Fleather is positioned as an answer to one of the world’s highest polluting industries.
“The visionary ‘flower-recycling technology’ is indeed revolutionary. I’m impressed with their innovative technology that promotes sustainable development goals and generates livelihood opportunities for hundreds of women simultaneously,” IIT Kanpur director Prof Abhay Karandikar said.
Phool.co founder Ankit Agarwal said, “In a short span of time, our modest efforts have managed to create a dent in the Indian fragrance industry. Phool as a brand is synonymous with luxury fragrance products. We plan to transform the global home fragrance market, and build a distinct brand with our product range.”
Nikhil Vora, Founder and CEO of Sixth Sense Ventures said, “The under-penetrated home fragrance industry presents a large, white space to be exploited. Plus, a clear shift to natural and sustainable alternatives is creating a strong demand for Phool’s products. The brand’s premium and international appeal can easily be leveraged across the globe, presenting a huge untapped opportunity for Phool's certified, Indian-origin products.”
Earlier, Phool.co had raised a seed round from IAN Fund, Social Alpha (FISE), Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation (San Francisco), and IIT Kanpur.
Founded in 2014, Sixth Sense Ventures currently manages over $550mn across three funds and has been ranked as one of the top-performing AIFs (Alternative Investment Funds) in India by CRISIL.