Narayana Murthy-led Catamaran ventures into energy beverage market
Infosys founder and chairman N R Narayana Murthy-led Catamaran Investment Pvt. Ltd, the $129 million venture capital fund, has invested in a 17-month-old company that will sell a lemon-flavoured energy beverage to compete with Red Bull.

Catamaran, along with FootPrint Ventures from Bangalore and four angel investors, have invested a total of Rs 60
million in Gurgaon-based Hector Beverages Pvt. Ltd. The shares of Catamaran and FootPrint Ventures are at Rs 25 million each.

With this investment, Catamaran\'s has ventured into start-ups, its other investments includes small loan lendings, SKS Mircofinance Ltd, and education services provider Manipal Universal Learning Pvt. Ltd.

\"Currently, we see opportunities in very early and very late stage, and not so much in mezzanine,\" said Arjun Narayan, Catamaran\'s investment head.

Hector Beverages, which hopes to pitch its Tzinga drink against Red Bull, seeks to utilise the funds to expand production capacity and strengthen its distribution network.

Beverage Tzinga will offer a 200 ml pack for Rs 20, vs. Red Bull\'s price of Rs 85 for a can of the same size.

\"Our unique selling point is its Indian taste and affordable price,\" said Neeraj Kakkar, CEO and a co-founder of the company. He added, \"Functional beverages were negligible in the non-alcoholic, ready-to-drink segment, now, they are 40% of the market.\"

Functional beverages included a wide array of non-alcoholic, ready-to-drink beverages with ingredients such as
herbs or vitamins, and are sold as energy drinks, sports and performance drinks, enhanced fruit beverages and water.

\"Tzinga, initially, will be sold in the NCR (National Capital Region) and in Bangalore,\" Kakkar said, without giving
details about the launch date of the beverage.


Source: www.FnBNews.com