The game-changing investment, acquisition and funding news impacting the industry and driving the business of wellness this week.
Women’s health and wellness company Maven raises $45m
Maven, a US-based women’s and family digital health company has closed a $45 million Series C funding round led by Icon Ventures, with participation from existing investors Sequoia, Oak HC/FT, Spring Mountain Capital, Female Founders Fund, Harmony Partners, and celebrities including Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling.
Over the past twelve months, the startup says it has expanded rapidly, driven by the adoption of its family benefits platform among individuals, employers, and health plans seeking better solutions for women’s health, family planning, and diversity in the workforce. Its latest round of funding will be used to support its growth, deepen investment in its core digital programs across fertility, maternity, return-to-work, and paediatrics and expand into adjacent areas.
“Maven is addressing critical gaps in care by offering the largest digital health network of women’s and family health providers,” said Tom Mawhinney, lead investor from Icon Ventures, who will join the Maven board of directors.
“With its virtual care and services, Maven is changing how global employers support working families by focusing on improving maternal outcomes, reducing medical costs, retaining more women in the workplace, and ultimately supporting every pathway to parenthood.”
Kellogg Co kicks off second wave of brand investment
Having found success via its “first wave of brand building investment”, with three of the four brands included generating double-digit growth, the f&b giant said during a recent conference that the second round of investments will be “proactive” and “opportunistic.” And should be viewed as another reason for confidence in its ability to deliver consistent growth.
For RXBAR, the undisclosed investment will be used to accelerate growth, while for MorningStar Farms, which produces plant-based meat alternatives, it will facilitate a packaging overhaul to make it “more Instagram-worthy,” Christopher M. Hood, senior vice-president of Kellogg North America told Food Business News.
Canned water maker Liquid Death secures $9m
The canned water maker, which emphasises its sustainable packaging, also received investments from Thrive Market CEO Nick Green, TOMS Shoes co-founders Jake Strom and Blake Mycoskie, GirlBoss founder Sophia Amoruso and Away co-founder Jen Rubio.
The funding will be used to expand its sales team ahead of national expansion.
Co-founder and CEO Mike Cessario told TechCrunch that until now, the majority of its sales have come via its website or from Amazon, so a big focus moving forward will be getting the brand into brick-and-mortar stores. In March it will roll out to Whole Foods stores across the US.
Plant-based startup Hodo partners with mission-driven venture capital fund
The startup will use the cash injection to expand production capacity in order to meet escalating demand.
“As an active investor in the plant-based category, we’ve tracked Hodo’s brand expansion and momentum closely. Hodo’s growth and popularity is rooted in organic ingredients and culinary innovation that sets it apart from the competition and resonates with top chefs and retail consumers alike,” commented Kate Storey, Partner of Renewal Funds.
“Renewal Funds’ eye for category-disrupting brands and its track-record of execution makes their team ideal to work with, in expanding Hodo’s growth in North America,” added Minh Tsai, Founder of Hodo.