Hershey’s invests in female-founded snacks brand Quinn
The snacks brand founded by Kristy Lewis has several industry-first products, including pretzels made with whole grain, gluten-free sorghum
Natural snacks company Quinn has closed an extension of its Series D round including an undisclosed minority investment from Hershey’s and existing investors. The funding will support new distribution and product innovation.
Kristy Lewis founded the company in 2010 committed to using the very best real ingredients while supporting agriculture and food transparency.
Quinn’s product range is sold in over 7,500 stores across the US. The company has reported increasing consumer uptake, leading to a 65% growth in revenue in 2020 over last year. The company argues sales have elevated Quinn to the leading pretzel brand in the Natural Channel and Whole Foods Market.
“Quinn shares Hershey’s commitment to sustainable business practices, inclusivity, listening to consumers, and being transparent about how their products are made and what goes into them,” said Steve Voskuil, Hershey’s chief financial officer. “Its emergence as a leader in natural foods is impressive, and we look forward to supporting their next phase of growth.”
The investment comes as venture funding for female founders experienced its lowest quarterly total in three years, according to Pitchbook Data.
Furthermore, women-led companies receive only 2.2% of all venture capital and only 7% of Fortune 500 companies, including Hershey’s. The company is led by chief executive Michele Buck.
Buck and Hershey have built a reputation for their sustainability and diversity and inclusion practices, and the company was recently recognised as one of ‘America’s Most Just Companies’ By Forbes and Just Capital.
“We are thrilled to have the support of Hershey’s, a company that is leading the way in gender equality by fostering an inclusive work environment and closing the pay gap,” said Lewis.
Lewis continued: “Hershey’s keen eye for category disrupting brands and building them into household names makes them an invaluable partner. After 10 years of creating a solid foundation to build from, we are looking forward to the next chapter in our story.”
Quinn entered the market a decade ago, delivering industry firsts snacks using only 100% natural ingredients and a dedication to transparency.
Its portfolio includes the first pretzels on the market made with whole grain, gluten-free sorghum.