Bengaluru-based fitness startup CureFit recently raised $878.2K from Bollywood star and brand ambassador Hrithik Roshan. MCA filings reveal that the prominent actor invested directly in Cure.Fit as well as through his entity, Extreme Brands.
In August 2017, CureFit secured the ‘Krrish’ star as its brand ambassador, signing a five-year contract for a total of $14.63 Mn.
CureFit was founded by former Flipkart executives Mukesh Bansal and Ankit Nagori in 2016 and aims at providing a holistic healthcare platform with deep emphasis on mind, body and nutrition. With this ambition to make healthy lifestyle accessible to all, CureFit has effectively integrated physical fitness, mental fitness, healthy eating, and is planning to launch a care section in one app, under Cult.fit, Mind.fit, Eat.fit and Care.fit respectively.
The Android and iOS app was launched in May 2017 and the startup has also set up 34 cult centres and seven Mind.fit centres all over Bengaluru and a few of them in Delhi/NCR with over 40,000 members. The app is designed to allow its subscribers to enjoy working out at home, order healthy meals or book classes in any chosen centre.
Although only 2 years old, the startup grew and expanded very rapidly thanks to six rounds of funding (excluding the Hrithik Roshan funding) amounting to $54.6 Mn. The main investors include prominent venture firms such as Accel Partners, IDG Ventures, Kalaari Capital, UC-RNT Fund, etc….
The firm is now looking forward to provide 50 fitness centres across India, and will aim to add an additional 5 every month. The startup has also made four acquisitions since inception, namely, Tribe Fitness, Seranity, Kristys Kitchen and a1000yoga.
The Fitness Industry In India
The sports, fitness and wellness market in India is expected to be worth $90 billion by 2022, growing at a CAGR of 17%. The factors pushing for this exponential growth include affluence, sedentary lifestyle and more awareness about health and fitness.
With the acquisitions and colossal funding it received, CureFit is now set to be a primary figure of the Indian fitness industry and all geared up to rival major startup players like Stratfit, Growfitter, Fitnapp and HealthifyMe.
Bollywood Stars Acting in Startups Culture
Several Bollywood stars have struck endorsement deals with emerging startup while other are even keen in investing in them. For example, Aamir Khan hold stakes in furniture startup Furlenco, Alia Bhatt invested in fashion portal Stylecracker, while Jacqueline Fernandez bought stakes in juice maker Raw Pressery.
Karishma Kapoor, Ajay Devgn and Shilpa Shetty are also among the first Bollywood stars to invest in lifestyle brands.
Additionally, Bollywood stars are demanded by brands for endorsements deals, as they look to replicate the success of cricket players such as Sachin Tendulkar, Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni with stars of the big screen. Amitabh Bachchan, Shahrukh Khan, Akshay Kumar, Salman Khan, and Hrithik Roshan are therefore some of the most sought after names in the startup industry.