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10th May 2019

Food industry robotics firm Karakuri secures £7m investment led by Ocado

How and what we eat in restaurants or on-the-go is changing thanks to new robotics startup Karakuri and its £7 million seed investment, led by Ocado.  With growing demand for personalised nutrition as part of a healthy lifestyle, Karakuri uses the latest innovation in robotics, machine learning, optics and sensors to allow restaurants and food retailers to offer personalised, freshly prepared, high quality meals, which maximise nutritional benefits and minimise food waste.

7th May 2019

The Seed Fund announces Class of 2019

With a line-up intent on shaking up the shopping basket, The Seed Fund has announced its Class of 2019, revealing the 14 food and drink start-ups that have been invited to join its summer Academy. Now in its seventh year, the philanthropic organisation will unite these ambitious entrepreneurs with top mentors from across the industry, during an intensive programme designed to transform big ideas into big business.

22nd February 2019

Riverside invests in premium rum blending specialist E&A Scheer

The Riverside Company, a global private equity firm, has made a significant investment in E&A Scheer, the largest global blender and vendor of premium rum in bulk. With origins dating back to 1712, Scheer specializes in sourcing and custom-blending to create high-quality, tailor-made rum blends. Scheer’s blending operation is located in Amsterdam, Netherlands, and aging facilities reside in Liverpool, United Kingdom, where its subsidiary the Main Rum Company (MRC) is located.

21st February 2019

MMC continue to back Gousto as the business announces another £18m funding

UK-leading meal kit company, Gousto, has raised another £18m in equity funding, bringing the total raised since launch to £75m. Attracting new investment from global health influencer, Joe Wicks, along with all existing shareholders: MMC Ventures, Unilever Ventures; Hargreave Hale; BGF Ventures and Angel CoFund.

20th February 2019

Equity Gap invests £575,000 in Spoonfed

Catering management software company Spoonfed is planning major expansion in the US, following £575,000 of development funding from Equity Gap.  

Aimed specifically at contract catering firms and restaurants supplying catering to businesses, universities, hospitals and many other institutions, Spoonfed’s SaaS (Software as a Service) platform creates real efficiencies for caterers and provides a straightforward ordering system for their customers. 

11th February 2019

Acceleris-backed Redag sale generates return for angels

Acceleris Capital investment Redag Crop Protection Ltd, a UK agrochemical discovery company, has sold its discovery and early development division to Globachem NV, retaining the lead assets for continued development to commercialisation.

With this new acquisition, Globachem continues its already fast-growing development. Globachem Discovery Ltd, the new name of the acquired company, will enhance and strengthen Globachem Group capabilities in Research and Development.

The partial sale will allow Redag to focus on the development of the two lead assets, a broad spectrum herbicide and a potato blight fungicide with a view to licensing them once further field trials and data packages have been created.

4th February 2019

Food and drink start-up accelerator opens for entry

Philanthropic start-up accelerator, The Seed Fund opened for entry on Friday 1 February, offering 12 places on its summer Academy run in partnership with Great Taste, the world’s most coveted food awards. With a packed schedule covering branding, funding, finance, PR, social media and more, this year’s Academy will also feature a brand new investment Pitch Day held at Piper Private Equity in Notting Hill.

In a marketplace where 90% of food and drink start-ups currently fail, The Seed Fund sets out to provide the knowledge, mentoring and opportunities to ensure that these fledgling businesses are able to survive and thrive during their early years. Supported by handpicked industry experts including Renée Elliott, founder of Planet Organic, the Guild of Fine Food’s John Farrand and Camilla Barnard from Rude Health, the Academy delivers a game-changing series of workshops, presentations and one-on-one sessions, run between May and September.

14th January 2019

Superfood Bakery raises £240k from investor including Henley Business Angels

Superfood Bakery, a company that makes delicious gluten-free dairy-free baking mixes and snacks sold at over 100 retailers, have closed their £240k round that includes investment from one member of Henley Business Angels.

Superfood Bakery sell at several prominent chains, including selected Boots, Ocado, Selfridges, Planet Organic, Revital and Gousto. The company’s goal is to help consumers improve their food habits by producing delicious, naturally gluten-free, nutritionally superior and free from refined sugar alternatives to the traditional baked goods.

11th December 2018

The Naked Deli opens city centre outlet at iconic location on Grey Street

Foresight portfolio company, The Naked Deli, has opened a new city centre outlet in Grey Street.

Launched in 2014, The Naked Deli offers a health-conscious and clean-eating experience and provides a range of gluten and dairy-free, vegan and paleo dishes. With a keen focus on locally-sourced foods, The Naked Deli uses high quality meats, responsibly sourced fish, and organic eggs and dairy.

Foresight invested £2.5 million into The Naked Deli in June 2018, providing growth capital to bolster systems and infrastructure and continue the rollout of additional sites around the UK. Foresight also introduced John Upton, ex MD of LEON, who has been appointed Chairman.

4th December 2018

Seneca Partners sells North West based Foodpack

3 years on from saving the business from Administration in a £7.5m deal, Seneca backed Foodpack Limited, the St Helen’s based specialist food manufacturing and packaging business, has been sold to Integrated Packaging Services Ltd (“IPS”).

This is the latest exit from Seneca’s EIS growth capital investment team and delivers a net tax free return of c.3.3x for their investors.

Tim Murphy of Seneca, who was a Director of Foodpack throughout the investment, commented:

Making a success of a business bought out of Administration is notoriously difficult and involves many highs and lows along the way. Bringing Foodpack back from the brink and turning it into a high quality operation has been a great result for our Investors and all stakeholders, not least the 150 colleagues who work in the business but also the wider community of St Helens that benefits from those jobs being secured.  

14th November 2018

Montezumas secures investment from Inverleith

Montezuma’s, a company founded by Helen and Simon Pattinson in 2000, has received investment from Edinburgh-based private equity firm Inverleith LLP. The specialist consumer brands investor has acquired a majority in the Company from the founders.

Montezuma’s has established itself as one of the largest leading independent British manufacturers of premium artisanal chocolate. Montezuma’s manufactures chocolate bars, truffles and gifting products, runs a subscription ‘Chocolate Club’ and has retail stores in the south-east of England and London. Founded by husband and wife team, Helen and Simon Pattinson, with a chocolate shop in Brighton eighteen years ago, the Company has grown into a leading independent player in the premium UK chocolate market.

2nd November 2018

EOS IM boosts Italian SME acquisitions with profitable coffee capsule company

EOS Investment Management (EOS IM), an independent London based AIFM, has acquired Neronobile, a family-founded coffee company that has enjoyed sustained growth in Europe. The transaction sees EOS IM’s Private Equity Fund acquire 67% of the company Neronobile whilst the existing shareholders maintain 33%, thus maximising business continuity.

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