Vancouver-based meal kit delivery service Fresh Prep has raised a $7 million CAD Series A round. This funding brings the startup’s total raised to date to over $10 million.
The round was led by Renewal Funds, a sustainability-focused venture capital firm, and received support from undisclosed strategic and existing investors. Fresh Prep said the additional capital will allow the company to hire more employees and “increase automation” of its technology. Genevieve Pinto, partner at Renewal Funds, has joined Fresh Prep’s board of directors.
“We pride ourselves on being a fully vertically-integrated food company that is strongly enabled by technology and innovation.”
“Our growth to date has been a result of automation and a focus on our customers,” said Becky Brauer, co-CEO and co-founder of Fresh Prep. “We’ve been able to optimize margins and constantly improve our product and service through our focus on technology and innovation.”
Founded in 2015 by Brauer, co-CEO Dhruv Sood, and Husein Rahemtulla, Fresh Prep uses a subscription-based model to deliver meal kits in reusable cooler bags with locally-sourced, pre-chopped ingredients.
Fresh Prep calls itself a “vertically-integrated” company, meaning it owns most of its supply chain. While sourcing food from local farmers, Fresh Prep prepares the food product for the meal kits itself and employs its own delivery drivers. The service is currently offered throughout British Columbia’s Lower Mainland, the Okanagan, as well as Vancouver Island. Fresh Prep has over 300 employees and services tens of thousands of customers across municipal BC.
“We pride ourselves on being a fully vertically-integrated food company that is strongly enabled by technology and innovation in logistics, which gives us access to real-time tracking,” said Sood.
Fresh Prep claims its revenue has increased 11,000 percent since the company launched. The startup said the COVID-19 pandemic is driving increased interest in the meal kit industry, adding that it has been able to adapt to provide uninterrupted service to its customers
Food delivery services have seen a surge in demand in recent months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Spud, another food delivery company that recently partnered with the Digital Technology Supercluster on an e-grocery project, told Global News it is also struggling to keep up with demand. One company that has not been able to stay competitive is Foodora, which last month closed its business in Canada after five years of operation.
“We’re thrilled to partner with an innovative business that not only advances our mission of supporting technology and consumer products companies that are good for people and the planet, but also one that has been rapidly growing, while demonstrating profitability,” said Renewal Funds’ Pinto.
Image source Fresh Prep via Facebook