Indonesian F&B startup UENA has raised an undisclosed amount of new funding co-led by East Ventures and the news investor from Trihill Captital. This new round, which was closed in Q1 2023, aims at expanding the startup's locations and services to reach more users and customers.
UENA is currently preparing for growth and duplication in Jakarta, where each kitchen needs to be quickly set up with the flexibility to utilise a variety of available spaces. In order to increase repeat business at different mealtimes each day and on various days of the week, UENA will also keep adding new menu items.
Commenting on the company’s expansion plan, Alvin Arief, co-founder and chief executive officer of UENA, said, “After implementation and execution of our idea, we feel fortunate to see the validation we receive from the market. Majority of our orders come from repeat customers and their orders continue to increase from month to month.”
“Even though we have only been operating in less than one year, the mature stores are already break-even and getting a healthy payback period. The new fund adds our confidence to continue capturing the great opportunity ahead,” he added.
Launched in 2022 by Alvin Arief and Roy Yohanes, UENA is positioned as a one-stop F&B solution aiming to solve daily food problems in the city. Through online delivery, it acts as a one-stop F&B solution for the Indonesian mass market by bringing together the most popular daily menus in one location. The goal of UENA is to enhance quality of life by providing daily food in an accessible, dependable, and inexpensive manner. Since its launch, the company has opened seven kitchen locations in Jakarta where over 300,000 portions have been served.
The decision to start its business came when the founders noticed the problem of daily food segment in Indonesia. The food segment in the country is a US$90 billion market annually. However, most of the food served were by unorganised street-side vendor, resulting in a bad customer experience, due to a significant degree of fragmentation, particularly in terms of quality, dependability, and pricing. UENA strives to address this issue by providing high-quality cuisine via online delivery at reasonable costs. It makes use of a very simple cloud kitchen concept and combines technology and economies of scale to boost quality while lowering cost at the same time.
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Customers can place direct orders for UENA by calling the UENA WhatsApp number or using the UENA app. Since more than 80% of their orders come through direct channels, it does not rely heavily on meal delivery aggregators.
Commenting on the investment, Jordy Tenka, investment professional at East Ventures, said, “We are glad to double down our investment in UENA. We believe in the problem and solution that was presented by Alvin and Roy when we first invested. A couple months in, the idea turned into a real conviction with the real feedback received from the market. We are excited to continue our support to UENA and partake in the disruption of the daily food industry in Indonesia.”
This was not the first seeding funding round of the company. Back in September 2022, the company had also raised an undisclosed seed funding led by East Ventures, along with the support from IDN Media and several angel investors.
With the funding, it aimed to continue the expansion in Jakarta to reach many more customers and serve their daily food necessities. It also continued to develop and utilise technology to serve the customers, such as mobile apps and cooking robotics. About 25% of the funding will also be used for marketing, mostly to introduce its solutions to the general market.
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