Eastern to sponsor fund

Monday, Mar 23, 2015,17:48 IST By metrovaartha A A A

Kochi | Eastern, one of the largest spice businesses in the country with a dominant presence in South India and the Middle East with a rapidly expanding presence in North, West India, United States and United Kingdom, will sponsor the Rs 125 crore CapAleph Indian Millennum ME Fund.
‘This engagement with the CapAleph Indian Millennium SME Fund is testimony to our family’s long standing commitment to support entrepreneurship in the food and agriculture space in India and other relevant markets’  Eastern Group Chairman Navas Meeran, who also heads the CII Southern Region, said in a release here today.
Apart from their contribution to the fund corpus, the Meeran Family Trust would also partner with CapAleph to set up a dedicated accelerator to incubate and support early stage entrepreneurship in selected entrepreneurial ventures in food and agriculture, a release said here.
A part of the CapAleph Indian Millennium Fund would be reserved for investments into young businesses being incubated by this accelerator, he added.
Firoz Meeran, the Managing Director of Eastern Condiments said ‘we have a deep rooted engagement with the food and agriculture space in India for over 5 decades. Our linkage with the Indian farm is based on our dependence on fine quality spices for our packaged spices business. Our unique direct distribution system gives us a very strong understanding of the Indian food and agri supply chain. This expertise will be valuable for the CapAleph fund as it supports entrepreneurs looking to build their businesses in India.’
The CapAleph Indian Millennium SME Fund was  Rs 125 Crore domestic private equity fund targeting investments into early stage food and agriculture businesses, mainly in India. The fund was advised by CapAleph Advisors which was run by George Thomas. George had been intimately involved with the food and agriculture space having spent almost half his professional life at Brooke Bond India and later Hindustan Lever Limited.
He was a Partner at India Value Fund for nearly a decade and served on the Boards of Trinethra Retail (now ‘More’), Music Broadcast (Radio City), TTK Healthcare Services (Insurance TPA), UEM Ltd. (Environment Management Technologies and Services) , Future Financial Services, Disha Microfinance (Microfinance), Meru Cabs.