Snackible : A Solution For All Snackaholics to Experience Healthier Snacking
The snacking market in India is growing at a tremendous pace due to multiple factors including increased disposable incomes, a need for convenience in our fast paced lives, and a cultural tradition of snacking between meals.
Snackible is a one stop snacks destination founded in May 2015 by Aditya Sanghavi. Snackible intends to revolutionise the snacking industry by introducing to the market a range of unique, tasty, and healthy snacks with convenient access and affordable prices.
At present, they offer their customers with a dynamic menu of 18 items, created by their own food innovation team, and add approximately 2 new snacks every month. Each snack is made combining wholesome, high quality ingredients along with unique combinations and flavours to deliver a delicious and healthy snacking experience for the customers.
The company's current list includes products such as Whole Wheat Waffles, Cream and Onion Whole Wheat Thins, Pizza Stick Dippers, Dark Chocolate Ragi Cookies, Baked Bhakarwadi, Hot Wasabi Peanuts and Seedy Crunchers, just to name a few.
Launched with a core focus on online sales, today Snackible sells through multiple online and offline sales channels including brick and mortar retail, vending machines, corporate canteens, gyms, hotel chains and other e-commerce portals.
The company also have a unique subscription model on their online portal, that allows the customers to subscribe for a weekly box or a monthly box for a specific duration.
Chitrakshi Suneja Interacts With Aditya Sanghavi, Founder, Snackible And Spoke To Him
The idea was conceptualised while I was working with Themis, a consulting company in Mumbai. Over a period of time, I noticed certain eating patterns that I now realise are fairly common at all workplaces. What I understood is that a couple of hours post the much-awaited lunch break, sometime between 4:30PM and 6PM, a lot of my colleagues would find themselves compulsively snacking on all kinds of rather unhealthy snacks, ranging from fried snacks delivered by roadside hawkers to highly processed and packaged snacks that are available over the counter. I also noticed that while most of us had made a resolve to start eating healthier meals during breakfast, lunch and dinner, when it came to mid-meal snacking there was a sheer lack of choice of healthy, nutritious, and tasty snacks, with competitive price points. What we were all facing is what I like to call the “Snack Crunch”.
I tried to understand whether there was any plausible solution to this “Snack Crunch”. In one of my usual rounds at a supermarket, what became evident is that although there were a few healthy snacking options available at select supermarkets such as Nature’s Basket and Food Hall, these snacks are generally priced at what most working people may categorise as relatively exorbitant rates. Furthermore, the more I spoke to others, I realised that the biggest problem to getting on a good snacking regime was that there is also a clear trade-off between health and taste. In other words, finding healthy snacks almost always meant foregoing good taste. For instance, high-fibre cookies taste nothing like my favorite chocolate chip cookies; and multigrain diet khakhra is clearly nothing close to our much-loved tea time khakhra.
In addition to the health-taste compromise, healthy snacking options are not easily accessible. Since healthy snacking options are available only at certain stores and supermarkets, the kirana stores down the road were of no help. And keeping our busy schedule in mind, my colleagues and I simply didn’t have the time to visit these niche supermarkets. The end result is that my colleagues and I would inevitably reach out for the tastier (and unfortunately unhealthier) snacks.
Keeping all this in mind, it became evident that there is a massive gap in the market for tasty and healthy snacking alternatives which are both reasonably priced and easily accessible. After some in-depth market research, it also became clear that the ‘Snack Crunch’ was somewhat a global phenomenon. Naturally, I wondered why there weren’t such snacking options already available.
What if we could log onto a website that listed out a variety of snacks, which met our taste and health requirements and that allowed us to select our choice of snacks? And what if this website made our lives easy by delivering these snacks right to our doorstep? I wanted to take this solution a step further.
Having studied in the U.K, I was aware that there are subscription models that allow you to pre-order snacks for a set time-period, just by clicking a few options on the website. To add a little spin on things, I decided that this website would also offer a subscription model which would ensure that our customers get a box of unique, healthy, tasty snacks at affordable prices delivered to their doorstep every week or month. This is exactly how Snackible was conceived. What started in the April 2015 as a humble snack delivery service has now grown at a rapid pace and delved into multiple sales channels with over 12,000 customers, spanning 80 cities.
About The Team
Aditya Sanghavi - Founder & CEO
After a couple of stints at investment banks, Aditya worked with a Startup & SME focused consulting company called Themis for around 2.5 years. He was instrumental in setting up and managing the Bangalore operations of the company and growing it at a CAGR of 130% working closely with multiple startups in the ecosystem. Aditya has graduated with a degree in Business Management and Finance from the Cardiff University, UK.
Aman Tuljapurkar - Head of Business Development
Aman Tuljapurkar joined in as the Head of business development and sales. Aman has graduated with a degree in Economics from New York University, and worked at Ernst & Young as a Financial Services Risk Management intern back in 2014.
Arjun Mehta - Head of Marketing
Arjun joined in as Head of Marketing at Snackible and has a degree in Political Science and History from McGill University, Canada. Before joining Snackible, he worked at MidDay, and at the law firm, AZB & Partners.
Jivitesh Bathija - Head of Retail Marketing & Sales
Head of Retail Marketing & Sales, Jivitesh, previously worked in the marketing vertical for multinational pharmaceutical industry companies like Unichem India. Jivitesh is MBA Marketing Graduate from SIES College of Management Studies.
Ketki Parab - Head of Operations
Ketki is the Head of Operations at Snackible. She is an electronics and telecom engineer from Mumbai University and interned at BARC as a telecom engineer before being roped in by Aditya to head operations at Snackible.
Shafiq Khan - Head of Retail Operations
Shafiq is the Head of Retail Operations at Snackible. Having studied Mechanical Engineering from Mumbai University, he pursued his MBA from Athena School of Management. Before joining Snackible (in fact, he started his stint first as an intern at Snackible), Shafiq was an intern at StratEDGE Business Consulting.
Special Key Features
The organisation is one of the only single-brand food companies in the country that has started the business with a lean, new age and online-first model, and then leveraged the brand value created into multiple other channels of sales offline. We are trying to create a symbiotic relationship between our online and offline arm to ensure that each is helping the other grow.
We have the capability to scale rapidly in volumes without having to make huge CAPEX investments. This is due to the fact that we do not invest in manufacturing. We outsource our manufacturing to specialised contract manufacturers with high volume capacities and automated machinery.
This allows us to focus on innovating unique snacking options and marketing them in the best way possible to our customers. Hence, we are a food innovation company at the core.
Another important feature about the Snackible website is that it allows our customers to subscribe to the snacks for a certain duration. This would ensure the customer gets a box of snacks every week or every month, based on their snack choices, delivered without him/her having to make any effort. The subscription plan is very convenient for our customers who are working long hours and want a quick and easy mechanism to ensure they snack healthy.
Each of our products has to stand the test of fulfilling three core characteristics:
We realised that in a country like India, where we have such diverse cuisines with such sophisticated taste profiles, providing our customers snacks which please their palate is as essential as the snacks being healthy. This lead us to spend a significant amount of time and dedication to disrupt the traditional methods of making snacks and creating new techniques, using unique ingredients and unique flavours to create products which stand out in the market and do not compromise on taste or health.
Each of our products available in the market is not a product which has an easy to find substitute. Take for example our Seedy Crunchers. We realised that seeds are packed with nutrition and needs to be an integral part of our diets. But the problem is that any snack which is dominated by seeds is understood by customers as not tasty or not tasty enough. We ideated and thought about how we could make a snack which combines the nutritional benefits of multiple seeds and also makes it a delicious snack. After about 12 iterations we finally hit the nail on the head. Our seedy crunchers is a mix of 4 highly nutritional seeds like pumpkin, flax, sunflower and watermelon along with a few almonds, dates, and black raisins. These are bound together into crunchy rocks which have a mild sweetness. This has been one of the best-selling snacks of Snackible.
We have raised a round of angel investment from Nibhrant Shah, a serial entrepreneur and angel investor who also happens to be the CEO of Themis, the company where I have previously worked. We are also talking to a few investors to raise a larger round of investment in the next few months, specifically for investment in technology, food innovation and marketing in general.
Considering we are a B2C company, we monetise mainly through sales of our products to our customers through multiple avenues. But just to give you an idea, we can divide our avenues into a few core segments:
1. Our website – through our subscription model as well as a la carte
2. Third party online marketplaces
3. Brick and mortar modern trade (Nature’s Basket, Hypercity etc) and retail outlets
4. Institutional sales – Hotel chains, vending machine companies, gyms, cafes, nutritionists, corporate canteens etc.
Every startup journey has its fair share of challenges that have to be overcome and certainly, we’ve had our own share of challenges in almost all areas right from mastering our just-in-time inventory system to streamlining our customer experience. One of the bigger challenges that we had to overcome during Snackible’s initial days was in relation to getting the technology in place. Since I don’t have a background in technology and nor did I have a tech co-founder, a common challenge for us was to understand and master the technological side of running an eCommerce portal.
We’ve got two simple avenues in marketing - online and offline. When it comes to online marketing, our campaigns are driven with beautiful photography driven content that gets your tastebuds churning the minute you see the photograph. The platform we use to showcase our snacks is of course Instagram. Our analytics tell us that up 45% of our daily orders come directly through Instagram i.e. through our followers or through followers referring our snacks to their friends. We also work closely with Instagram bloggers to review our products and spread the word about our brand.
Facebook Adverts are a huge plus on the online marketing front - with our ads again focussed especially on our photographs, and that we’re able to target our ads very specifically to our target audience - generally office-going people who are looking for avenues to become healthier in their daily lives - really helps push our brand out there India-wide. Finally, we do use Twitter as well to put ourselves out there.
As for offline marketing, we try and use certain innovative and out of the box techniques. For instance, we’ve run numerous rounds of sample marketing in areas with high corporate activity. We’ve distributed menus and samplers. Customer calls is another huge avenue of marketing. Knowing that, we’ll win out in the number of re-orders we’re able to bag, for every 20 customer calls we make, 5 customers choose to re-order either over the phone itself or then through the website. Other offline marketing techniques include various rounds of cross-marketing with other startups. For instance, we collaborate with various tea companies to provide us with free tea samples for our customers i.e. the flap you see as soon as you open our snack box is used as a marketing space to not only cross-promote the brands we’re working with but also to better the overall experience of our customers.
Over the past year, we’ve serviced over 12,000 customers in more than 80 cities across the country and added over 12 unique snacks to our menu. We’ve recently even taken a dive into the retail sector and as of today are in 120 stores in Mumbai. We also sell on over 20 online marketplaces. We sell our products in 3 of the leading international hotel chains in their Indian properties. As for the future, we’re continually striving to drive up our online sales through our marketing efforts mentioned below. As for retail, once we conquer the Mumbai market, we’re hitting our tier 1 cities/metropolitan cities starting with Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, and Kolkata. Finally, we’re also trying to launch a products in various customer segments in price ranges like Rs 35 and Rs 20 for the mass market.
Marketing Size And Opportunity
The snacking market in India is growing at a tremendous pace due to multiple factors including increased disposable incomes, a need for convenience in our fast paced lives, and a cultural tradition of snacking between meals. According to a Nielson report, the snacking market has grown from a Rs 8,000 Crores in 2004 to a staggering Rs 47,000 Crores in 2013.
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