Mumbai-based food startup Authenticook wins 200,000 euros by participating in Booking.com’s first accelerator programme called ‘Booster’, competing with 700 startups from across the world.
Authenticook made it to the final selection of top 10 ventures globally to pitch for grants and received 200K euros from the program. The top 10 shortlisted ventures underwent three weeks of workshops and intensive coaching and had the opportunity to pitch their scaling plans to a live audience and panel of expert judges in Amsterdam.
Vikas Bhola, Head – Indian Subcontinent, Booking.com said, “While we were highly impressed with all the start-ups from India that applied, we saw in Authenticook a truly great idea, smart business acumen and the ability to promote inclusive growth in Indian tourism that supports and develops local economies and communities.”
Authenticook was founded in 2015 by Ameya Deshpande, Aneesh Dhairyawan and Priyanka Deshpande, which aims to empower one million Indian women to showcase their culinary talent through an alternate source of income and preserve the unique and diverse culinary heritage of the Indian Sub-Continent and plans to scale their platform to reach more customers and communities through their immersive and social dining experiences.
Said Ameya Deshpande, Co-Founder and Head of Strategy, Business Development & Finance, Authenticook, “Being a part of Booking.com’s Booster Program has been a huge opportunity for Authenticook and will open many doors for us in the future. Working with other like-minded businesses across various industries and learning from each other over the past few weeks has been incredible. We can’t wait to take what we’ve learned back to our colleagues in order to empower more Indian women and showcase our diverse culinary history with customers from all over the world.”
The startup currently operates in nine cities and with the received fund it expects to increase this to 35-40 by the end of 2018. Nearly half of the fund will be used to improve its marketing efforts and the rest for creating operations teams and upgrading the technology.