LONDON, United Kingdom — Propercorn, the UK’s fastest growing popcorn brand, has secured £7 million in funding from private equity firm Piper and JamJar; an investment vehicle set up by the founders of Innocent drinks.
With a view to support the brand’s UK and international growth, the cash injection is the first major source of funding Propercorn has received since its launch five years ago. Prior to this an investment of £120,000 had been made in the company, via two private individuals.
Within six months two private individuals – “friends of friends” is how Ryan and Cassandra describe them – invested a total of £120,000 in the company, resulting in them, together with Ryan’s mother, owning just under 20% of Propercorn, with the co-founders retaining the rest.
‘I was very fortunate in getting some incredibly useful advice from Richard Reed, one of the innocent co-founders, in the very early days of Propercorn, and we’ve stayed in touch with the JamJar team ever since, explained Cassandra Stavrou, co-founder of Propercorn.
“They and Piper have consistently demonstrated they have the same passion and enthusiasm for Propercorn as we do, and are equally focused on making it the number one global snack brand,” she added.
Founded in 2011 by friends, Cassandra Stavrou and Ryan Kohn, Propercorn has sold more than three million bags of its award-winning popcorn per month. Due largely to consumer demand for healthier and more interesting snack options, sales of the brand’s gluten-free popcorn are forecast to rise from £10m in 2015 to approximately £15m by the end of 2016.
Currently sold in 10 countries, as part of the new deal, Adam Balon, co-founder of JamJar and innocent, will join Propercorn as chairman, as the brand continues to grow this global presence.
Speaking about his future involvement with the brand, Balon said:
“In only a few short years, Cassandra and Ryan have crafted Propercorn into a wonderful business with a talented team, cohesive culture and a standout brand. With this superb foundation they have created, Propercorn has so many opportunities for growth and I’m hugely excited to be a part of this next chapter.”
Delivering innovative new products and flavours including sweet coconut and vanilla, and fiery Worcester sauce and sun-dried tomato, Propercorn has distribution in 15,000 stockists, including Selfridges and Waitrose across the UK.
Now firmly on course to tackle the next stage of Propercorn’s growth, Stavrou is confident she has the best investors to help her realise her ambitions.