The brand has secured extensive supermarket shelf space to challenge the market leaders of chocolate spreads
The Good Food Fund, which backs enterprises helping combat childhood obesity, has made its second investment.
The fund, managed by early-stage venture capital firm Ascension Ventures, has invested £200,000 into JimJams. The fund’s limited partners include Big Society Capital and Impact on Urban Health, part of Guy’s & St Thomas’ Charity.
Since 2015, Mission Ventures has operated an independent accelerator for start-up brands in food and drink and invested in JimJams in 2016, managing its acceleration programme to scale the brand.
Mission Ventures has also worked with the Good Food Fund as its business acceleration partner since the Fund’s inception in 2019 and launch in 2020.
Launched in 2015 by Kevin and Kellie Bath, JimJams is a family brand challenging market leaders in chocolate spreads. The business has built extensive national distribution in Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Waitrose and Asda, with Tesco listing its spreads in February. The company also supply Holland & Barrett, Tesco Express and Merlin Entertainment with its Milk Chocolate Dippers.
Kevin Bath told NutritionInvestor that the turnover has increased by 88% since last year to £1.2 million.
“The investment from Good Food Fund is a massive boost to our growth,” said Bath. “The additional support from Mission Ventures will help us immeasurably in shaping the business and continuing to offer parents healthier options to everyday snacks and store cupboard staples.”
Matt Towner, portfolio manager at Impact on Urban Health, added: “In order to tackle childhood obesity effectively we need to take on the torrent of unhealthy food options faced by families. Making healthier versions of popular products is a key part of this and we are delighted to see the Good Food Fund invest in Jim Jams.”
Twelve months of free business acceleration support will be provided by Mission Ventures as part of the investment package. Its chief executive Paddy Willis said: “We’re committed to helping challenger brands like JimJams provide healthier alternatives for all families. Our accelerator programme is run by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs and designed to optimise their chances of scaling successfully to compete with market leaders.”
Emma Steele, investment director at Ascension Ventures commented: “We are thrilled to be able to support the growth of a brand in a market dominated by players that have not yet pivoted towards healthier solutions. JimJams has a great track record in the UK market and its continued growth reflects a market ready for healthier alternatives.”
Date published: 15 January 2021