Malaysian-based food startup Meals in Minutes has on Wednesday announced that it has successfully secured $1.5 million in a seed round.

Meals in Minutes said in a statement that the round is led by an early-stage venture fund and seed accelerator, 500 Global, with participation from a private investor.

This fresh round of capital will fuel Meals in Minutes’s growth across Malaysia and Singapore, including establishing a presence in the United Kingdom.

The funding will also be focused on the research and development to expand Meals in Minutes’s selection of food
products and build a stronger marketing campaign to reach greater target audiences across all markets.

Meals in Minutes said the firm will continue to expand and is constantly on the lookout for funding and partnership opportunities.

“The funding will be focused on achieving key milestones such as successfully launching in the United Kingdom market, product development, and building a robust foundation for future growth across all markets,” said Vin Vin Khu, Chief Financial Officer of Meals in Minutes.

Launched in 2020 by Brandon Lim and Khiara Mia, Founder and Co-founder of Meals in Minutes respectively, the food startup serves a brand new advanced meal kit concept with its frozen vacuum-packed ready-to-cook meals, allowing consumers to whip up a gourmet meal within 15 minutes.

All meals are flash-frozen, and individually portioned to reduce food wastage with no genetically modified ingredients or additional artificial substances, and are fully HALAL, HACCP and ISO 22000 certified.

“Meals In Minutes was founded with the vision of simplifying cooking for individuals leading busy lives, offering them the opportunity to enjoy high-quality, clean, and nutritious meals without the associated hassle and requisite culinary skills,

“Additionally, recognizing the considerable advantages of this concept, we anticipated its positive impact on business and cafe owners who aspire to provide food services but lack the necessary equipment and resources to operate a fully equipped kitchen,” said Lim.

Considering the love and passion for food amongst Malaysians, Meals in Minutes said it is unsurprising that the food and beverage (F&B) industry remains a lucrative business, as the industry is expected to grow annually by 6.85 percent from 2024 to 2028.

However, it noted F&B owners, looking to tap into this opportunity, are finding themselves caught in a manpower dilemma.

It noted that in Malaysia, fewer young individuals are turning to F&B as a career option due to the low pay wage and the perceived uncertainty within the industry.

Additionally, it said the delay in issuing work permits for foreign workers makes it exceptionally slow and difficult for owners to turn to foreign workers to overcome manpower

Moreover, it said the F&B sector exhibits a significantly higher employee turnover rate, with an average of approximately 75 percent, which could lead to businesses facing reduced quality of services and products, and an increased workload amongst existing employees.

According to the statement, integrating Meals in Minutes food products as a solution enables businesses to optimize kitchen operations, resulting in the efficient and consistent production of gourmet meals.

It said this is achieved without the need for a fully equipped kitchen or the employment of a professional chef, thus overcoming the manpower dilemma without compromising quality.

“Our advanced meal kits not only offer sustainable solutions to F&B businesses but also tackle environmental concerns like food wastage and excessive packaging,” said Khiara Mia, Co-Founder of Meals in Minutes.

“We’re also collaborating with CleanHub to prevent plastic pollution by collecting plastic waste for every product sold and are committed to delivering a genuine impact with every purchase,

“Sustainability remains a pivotal factor in shaping our future business strategies,” she added.

It is noted that Meals in Minutes is available in Malaysia across multiple premium grocery stores including Jaya Grocer, Village Grocer, Ben’s Independent Grocer and selected 7-Eleven stores.

Meals in Minutes is also currently supplying their food products to Loud Speaker, a Malaysian karaoke chain and has successfully collaborated with celebrities such as Joe Flizzow to create the unique Joe’s Burger, made with 100 percent pure premium yellowfin tuna patty.

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