Shark Tank S2: Sugar loving shark buys into no-calorie iced teas biz

Shark Tank S2: Sugar loving shark buys into no-calorie iced teas biz
  • Jyoti Bharadwaj founded a healthy drinks startup TeaFit in 2021, and it has sold ₹15 lakh worth of products as of now.
  • TeaFit served over 20,000 customers through online and offline channels.
  • Bharadwaj walked away with a collective investment of ₹50 lakh for 8% equity from four sharks, Vineeta Singh, Peyush Bansal, Anupam Mittal, and Aman Gupta.
A mompreneur from Mumbai, Jyoti Bharadwaj, left all the Shark Tank India judges impressed with her beverage company, TeaFit. TeaFit produces zero-calorie healthy drinks made with natural herbs and ingredients, without sugar or a sweetener.

Started in 2021, the brand offers Green Tea, Black Tea and Barley Tea, along with instant premixes. A fan of Shark Tank US and a mother of two young kids, Bharadwaj gave a sharp pitch, spouting off minute details about the product’s pricing and packaging.

At the start of the pitch, she brought her two young children aged eight and five with her. They have been a part of her entrepreneurial journey, she told the judges.

“I have watched every episode of every season of Shark Tank US many times over the years. I have replayed so many of the pitches in my mind - Scrub Daddy, Drink Poppi, Bantam Bagels, and many others. I am just so incredibly grateful to get a national platform to talk about TeaFit, why we do what we do and our vision for the future,” shared Bharadwaj on her Linkedin, four days before her Shark Tank India episode aired.

Startup’s value zooms from ₹2 cr to ₹6.25 cr


After sampling her teas on the show, even Aman Gupta, boAt co-founder, who loves sugary drinks was left impressed.

Bharadwaj initially asked for ₹50 lakh for 3% equity which valued the company at ₹16.67 crore. She said that TeaFit received a term sheet of ₹1 crore that valued her startup at ₹20 crore in convertible notes. A convertible note is a type of bond offered by companies, which can be converted later into equity.

Sugar Cosmetics’ co-founder Vineeta Singh and’s founder Anupam Mittal jointly gave the first offer — ₹50 lakh for 25% equity, which valued the company at ₹2 crore.

Lenskart’s co-founder Peyush Bansal followed with an offer of ₹50 lakh for 20% equity, which raised its value to ₹2.5 crore.

However, it was boAt co-founder Aman Gupta’s offer, of ₹50 lakh for 10% equity, that immediately doubled the valuation to ₹5 crore. Bansal, Singh and Mittal instantly responded that they would match Gupta’s offer.

Bharadwaj sought a collective investment of ₹50 lakhs from all four judges, but for 8% equity. This valued the startup at ₹6.25 crore. The judges accepted this offer.

When mother-in-law turned investor

After graduating from the Manipal Institute of Technology, Jyoti Bhardwaj who hails from Patna pursued an MBA in Finance and Marketing from the Indian School of Business (ISB). She worked with the startup UrbanFresh and real-estate portal before starting her entrepreneurial journey with TeaFit.

TeaFit got its first investment of ₹10 lakh from Bhardwaj’s mother-in-law, Dr Urmila Pandey. Her mother-in-law is a PhD holder and a former professor who had to give up her professional career due to family obligations. But she kept the spirit of financial independence and ambition alive in her daughters and daughter-in-law.

The first commercial batch of TeaFit was launched in March 2021. Bharadwaj had signed up with national retail chains before going into production. Shortly after the launch, a second lockdown was imposed in India. Undeterred, Bharadwaj partnered with e-commerce giant Amazon.

“As we got the product into the stores, the second lockdown started. Before the product could even reach the customers, the doors were closed,” shared Bharadwaj in a video with Amazon.

In FY22, TeaFit made a profit of ₹78,000 from sales worth ₹15.5 lakh, with zero advertising spend. The startup forecasts that it will end FY23 with revenue to the tune of ₹45-₹55 lakh, based on the sales in July, August and September.

“Over the last 12 months during subsequent batches, every single one of my fears has come true. Bottles came out distorted, filters got choked, entire batches were trashed, labels didn’t fit, long power cuts, over-brewing you name it. But you know what? We made it past every single one of them and have consistently produced world-class beverages batch after batch,” shared Bharadwaj a year after TeaFit started, in an old LinkedIn post.

TeaFit has served over 20,000 customers through online and offline channels. As much as 35% of its sales come from online channels, while the remaining 65% come from offline channels.

From Tata CLiQ to Paytm to Meta India: the professional journey of Vikas Purohit
New flagship phones iQOO 11 vs OnePlus 11 – specs and features compared