VC fund invests in smoothie startup
The venture capital fund of a food maker in the region has invested seed money in a company that makes frozen smoothies.
Eighteen94 capital, the VC fund of Battle Creek-based Kellogg Company, led a $2-million seed round for the Washington, D.C.-based smoothie maker Bright Greens.
Blu Venture Investors, an early stage investment group based in the mid-Atlantic, also participated in the round.
CircleUp, a platform providing capital and resources to early stage consumer brands, closed the funding for Bright Greens.
“We are excited to partner with eighteen94 and Blu to build our company,” said Brian Mitchell, founder and CEO, Bright Greens. “The deep domain expertise and ability to help Bright Greens commercially was a true differentiator among the investors we met.”
Bright Greens makes blender-free, plant-based frozen smoothies that can be found at select Whole Foods markets and more than 1,000 Kroger stores.
The frozen smoothie cubes come in Bright Blueberry, Mintergreen, Peaches & Green and Pineapolis flavors. To make the smoothie, consumers add hot water to the frozen cubes and shake well.
“The smoothies have a short list of natural ingredients,” Mitchell said.
He said the capital infusion will be used for product development, sales, marketing and hiring.
As part of the deal, Simon Burton, managing director of eighteen94 capital, will join Bright Greens’ board and help the startup draw on Kellogg’s experience in the food industry.
“Bright Greens is re-imagining the smoothie, making it more convenient for consumers to get their fruits and vegetables,” Burton said. “We see enormous potential for Bright Greens, given the demand for convenience in our culture.”
Its investment focus includes startups pioneering new ingredients, foods, packaging and enabling technology.
Mitchell started Bright Greens in 2015 at the Washington, D.C.-based food incubator Union Kitchen.