HomeStartupsVivek Gupta and Abhay Hanjura: Corporate Success to Entrepreneurial Journey

Vivek Gupta and Abhay Hanjura: Corporate Success to Entrepreneurial Journey

Vivek Gupta’s journey began with an impressive feat, becoming a chartered accountant at just 21. Leaving behind Chandigarh, he eventually found himself in Bengaluru, where he spent almost a decade honing his financial skills in a venture capital firm. Abhay Hanjura, on the other hand, started in Jammu and later moved to Bengaluru for biotechnology studies. Their paths crossed professionally, and in that shared moment, they discovered their mutual passion for entrepreneurship.

The Birth and Ambitious Growth of Licious

In July 2015, Licious made a humble entry into the market with an initial annual turnover of just Rs 3 crore. However, the enthusiastic response from customers ignited a fire within Vivek and Abhay, driving them to chart a remarkable growth trajectory. Vivek Gupta, in a recent interview, laid out their ambitious vision: a revenue exceeding Rs 1500 crore in the ongoing financial year, with a focus on profitability and a potential positive EBITDA by 2023. Notably, an IPO is not on the table until profitability is achieved.

A 300% Revenue Surge and Nationwide Presence

In the past three years, Licious has seen an astonishing 300% surge in revenue, firmly establishing itself as a major market player. Serving customers in over 20 Indian cities, the company has successfully delivered more than 5 million packs of premium meat products.

From Series F2 Funding to India’s First Direct-to-Customer Unicorn

As of the third quarter of FY22, Licious reported a remarkable revenue of INR 706 crore, which includes INR 16.9 crore attributed to delivery charges. They also generated INR 23.5 crore from bank deposits and current investments. In a significant milestone, Licious secured $150 million in a Series F2 funding round, shortly after achieving a coveted $1 billion valuation.

Navigating Fear and Family Support

Vivek often talked about his initial fear of leaving a stable job, which ultimately became a driving force behind his entrepreneurial journey. Abhay’s unconventional career move initially surprised his parents but eventually won them over.

The Recipe for Licious’s Success

During their research phase, Vivek and Abhay understood that the key to success lay in delivering high-quality meat products, with a strong emphasis on antibiotic-free chicken. After two months of meticulous planning, they took the bold step of launching their venture. With a small team of five members, they relied on innovative marketing strategies, including organizing events and tasting sessions within residential communities, and leveraging the power of positive word-of-mouth referrals.

From 5 to 3,500 Employees: Licious’s Ascendance

By 2022, Licious had expanded its workforce to include 3,500 employees, further solidifying its position as a significant player in the industry and India’s first direct-to-customer unicorn.

Snigdha Basu
Snigdha Basu
A multifaceted writer, Snigdha Basu is a freelancer and a columnist at Entrepreneurs Today. She also spearheads Chic Life Edition - her own Digital Magazine with sustainable fashion, beauty, and culture at its core. Reach out to Snigdha at [email protected] for inquiries.
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