The Whole Truth (TWT), a 100% clean-label food brand has raised ~USD 15Mn in its Series B round, led by Sequoia Capital India. The round saw participation from existing investors Matrix Partners India and Sauce.Vc. Angel investors who previously invested in the company include Nithin Kamath (Zerodha), Sriharsha Majety (Swiggy) and Jaydeep Burman (Rebel Foods). The fresh capital will be deployed towards scaling up the brand’s in-house manufacturing capacity, hiring great talent, and in growing retail distribution.
TWT, which was founded by Shashank Mehta, an ex-Unilever marketeer, is the result of his life-long struggle with obesity and his realization that the main culprit was unhealthy packaged food, loaded with hidden sugars and chemicals, masquerading as healthy. Rachna Aggarwal, a bakery chef and chocolatier with over 15 years of experience, heads TWT’s product development and is the person behind the category-changing products the brand is known for. All other functions are led by a team of EiRs (Entrepreneurs in Residence) who don’t come from the food industry but are hell-bent on setting it right.
With a mission of creating the most transparent, clean, and ‘truthful’ food brand in India, TWT is the only Indian brand to list every ingredient that goes into their food, upfront. Their myth-busting content on Instagram, YouTube, and their in-house publication called Truth Be Told – has earned them a loyal community of over 300K members who follow the brand to understand the complex, misleading world of food and fitness content.
TWT’s latest product offering is date-sweetened, no added sugar chocolates. A unique product that the market has never seen, TWT manufactures these chocolates at its in-house, bean-to-bar chocolate factory. Their other offerings include Protein Bars, Peanut Butters, and Muesli.
Commenting on the funding, Shashank Mehta, Founder and CEO of The Whole Truth Foods said, “From Day 1, we’ve maintained we’re not a food-brand. We’re a truth brand. Fighting to bring truth back to food. To make food real again. And we intend to bring this philosophy to all food categories where consumers are being sold half-truths. From Protein Bars to Chocolates and beyond. With this new fundraise, hence, nothing changes. We’ll continue to innovate and enter more categories. We’ll continue to grow distribution and bring our existing products to more consumers. And we’ll continue to make clutter-breaking, myth-busting content that educates consumers. Because what we read and believe, is what we eat and repeat.”
Since its Series A in July 2021, TWT has grown 7X, launched 100% Clean-Label, bean-to-bar Chocolates and grown physical distribution to over 10 cities. With their proprietary R&D and in-house manufacturing, they’ve managed to eliminate all hidden sugars, artificial flavors, and harmful preservatives from their food.
“Building large, enduring brands takes decades. And the fact that *all* our existing investors, even in the current environment have chosen to back us once again – is all the validation we need to know we’re on the right track,” Shashank added.
“Sequoia Capital India is delighted to double-down on the partnership with The Whole Truth. We have been working with Shashank, Rachna, and team for over a year and a half now and have been very impressed with their product innovation engine, marketing acumen, and overall quality of execution. We are excited about the journey ahead,” said Abhishek Mohan, Principal at Sequoia India.
“We’re excited to double down on our investment in The Whole Truth (TWT), and recommit to Shashank, Rachna, and the team. With the launch of chocolates, they’re taking TWTs philosophy and execution to one of the largest categories that can impact millions of people including kids. Privileged to be part of this partnership with Sequoia Capital India, Sauce, and others – looking forward to the journey ahead!” said Vikram Vaidyanathan, Managing Director at Matrix Partners India.
“The potential of this brand lies in its simplicity and universality – that consumers hate being lied to. We backed Shashank when he had just this thought and a protein bar mock-up, and it’s extremely gratifying to see it become such an exciting and loved food brand,” commented Manu Chandra, Founder and Managing Partner at Sauce.vc.