As Greta Thunberg heads back to Europe from the U.S. after radicalizing a generation, entrepreneurs are quickly realizing there is a zeitgeist to be gotten hold of here. With food production a major contributor to climate change, it’s no surprise then that on-demand food startups are appearing to cater to this new audience.
Simple Feast launched its plant-based food product in early 2017 and since then has developed a fast-food range that is catching the climate and taste fashion wave.
The company has now raised a total of $33 million in a Series B round led by U.S.-based venture capital firm 14W, with a number of other existing investors participating, including Europe’s Balderton Capital, which is increasing their investment in the business.
The company was partly self-funded in the beginning, then added Sweet Capital (London/Stockholm) and byFounders (CPH/SF) as the first VCs. Later, Balderton Capital (London) and 14W (NYC) joined in the Series A and B. The total funding to date is now north of $50 million.
The founders are Jakob Jønck and Thomas Ambus; Jønck was co-founder of Endomondo, acquired by MyFitnessPal.
Jønck says: “The future of food does not just belong to plants, but will be both plant-based and unprocessed. This movement is pivotal to save not only our planet, but also human health. With this investment, we can continue our journey and bring our products to more people, in existing as well as new markets, while also strengthening our R&D efforts in new food innovation.”
Simple Feast is ticking the climate agenda boxes, with packaging made solely by FSC-approved cardboard boxes, to the cooling element they use to keep the food fresh (frozen tap water in drinkable cartons) and their use of all-organic produce.
Alex Zubillaga from 14W commented: “Over the past year since first investing in Simple Feast, we have continued to be impressed by the caliber and deep operational experience of the management team that Jakob Jønck has built around him… We believe Simple Feast has the opportunity to become a global, category-defining brand as they expand to the U.S. early next year.”
Typical customers are meat-eating families in their 30s and 40s who are trying to cut down on their meat consumption. They are well-educated, have a middle or high income and demand high quality and transparency in the food they consume. Their main competitors are restaurants, meal-kits and take-away. The idea is not to compromise on taste or quality, nor convenience or packaging.