Subscription plans are often viewed as the Holy Grail by entrepreneurs, especially for online FoodTech delivery services and new brands. With it, you can transform your expensively acquired customer into a recurring client. This week, in this newsletter we cover tow examples of such subscription plan. First with a new and trendy cocktail startup, Haus and then with Thistle, a ready-to-eat delivery startup.
#1 – Haus, the low alcohol cocktail startup raises $4.5m to build a subscription plan
Haus, a low alcohol cocktail maker raises $4.5m to grow faster, notably through a membership program. Haus’ drinks are at 15% ABV (level of alcohol). The infusion of cash will be used to launch a subscription service rather than to focus on retail expansion. This is both a risky and audacious bet from a new beverage brand. We will see if a brand such as Haus can convince younger generations to subscribe to a monthly $144 plan for two bottles. Would you be ready to subscribe to a monthly delivery of booze? I am quite curious to see how well it goes.
#2 – Thistle, a ready to eat delivery startup raises $5m to cover all your dietary needs
Thistle, a startup that delivers 3-times a week cooked meals raised $5M. We look keenly on all startups working on solutions covering all your needs with fresh and qualitative foods.
Startups such as Thistle compete with meal kits companies such as HelloFresh or Blue Apron which have a hard time now. Consumers seem ready to take the extra step (and extra spending) to receive already cooked meals at home. And with only 3 delivery per weeks, in morning slots, the company also avoid the high costs of delivery on demand and has also less environmental impact. Is this kind of more personalised subscription plan will work where meal kits seem to be failing (notably at getting good retention)?
#3 – Who will prove the plant-based burgers that all the restaurants want and need?
While most QSR chains are dealing with either Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat, what are the options for smaller players? Should they also source products from these two companies and brand them on their menus? To date, alternatives are not quite satisfying and they lack the bargaining power of big names such as Starbucks (which announced its will to add more plant-based foods in its restaurants).
A solution may come from HoReCa retailers. Sonner this year, Sysco, one of the leaders of this business (an equivalent the Transgourmet and Pomona in Europe) launched its plant-based burger. Both a burger patty and plant-based ground beef will be available to Sysco’s many clients in the hospitality industry.
Will these products be trusted as the new startup brands can be?
#4 – Yofix, the Israeli plant-based and probiotic yogurt receive funding from two European dairy giants
Yofix, one of the top startups (at least in terms of media attention) from the famous Israeli accelerator The Kitchen raises $2.5m. The startup is known for its probiotic plant-based and soy-free yogourts. While many plant-based startups are receiving bad comments for their long list of highly processed ingredients, Yofix’s have a quite clean label.
What’s more interesting, at least in the scope of this deal is the name of the investors. Two big milk related companies, the French cheesemaker BEL and the German dairy and yoghurt company Muller have taken part in the deal.
Will it help these European dairy giants to avoid the fate of some of their US counterparts?
You still want more, here are some of our favourite reads of the last couple of weeks:
- Airplane meals are a subject of intense debate (and of many YouTube videos and Instagram accounts), but what’s behind them? Vox
- Danone invests an undisclosed amount in French anti-waste startup Phenix. Food Ingredients
- Oatly a Swedish startup and one of the leading plant-based milk players in the US is considering IPO, sale and additional funding. If it goes to be acquired or to raise money, it will be interesting to see who is behind the deal. FoodDive
- Famous snack bars maker Kind is now developing into frozen and fresh foods. Look at the video interview if you have some time. TL;DR; Kind didn’t need to raise money because of its sustainable and high growth. The only need it had was to partner with Mars for international distribution. CNBC
- Egg white replacement Dutch startup raises $500k to develop its product. AgFunder
As you can see, FoodTech is indeed moving faster than ever in 2020. But you are not alone. DigitalFoodLab is here to help you :
- Stay at the top of your domain. We prove exclusive insights and information through talks and our FoodTech watch
- Prepare for the future. We help you make plans for long term trends and their implication on your business and to identify the right startup to work on your current issues.
- Innovate faster. We work with you to define the innovation strategy fitted to your business means and needs.
No matter if you are a startup or a food giant, we are here to work with you and change the world of food! (contact us).
Have a great week!