London-based startup that allows you to share unwanted food with neighbours, OLIO, snaps $43M

The London-based startup for sharing of food and other items, OLIO, has closed a $43 million Series B funding round, to fund its fight against the $1.3 trillion of food waste created globally each year.

This latest fundraise saw existing investors Swedish investment firm VNV Global and New York-based hedge fund Lugard Road Capital become major investors in OLIO, supported by further funds from Accel, Octopus Ventures, Rubio plus technology entrepreneur and chair of Grimsby Town football club Jason Stockwood and media entrepreneur and politician Lord Waheed Alli. DX Ventures, the VC arm of food delivery firm Delivery Hero, is a new highly strategic investor in the round.

The women-led startup, founded in 2015 by Tessa Clarke and Saasha Celestial-One, has now amassed a user base of five million people. The hyperlocal food sharing app is used to give away unwanted food and other household items to neighbours, for free, with the aim of reducing waste in the home and helping people to consume more locally and sustainably.

It is the brainchild of Clarke, who struggled to find anyone to take the unwanted food from her fridge when she was moving home. Since its launch, the app has enabled over 25 million portions of food and three million non-food items to be saved from the bin.

This partnership will enable the app to accelerate its international expansion plans, and quickly grow the Food Waste Heroes Programme, which supports food businesses and restaurants around the world in their quest to achieve zero food waste locations.

After a year of rapid growth in the UK, the next generation community marketplace plans to build its presence across the world, focusing on 10 key markets in Latin America, Northern Europe and Asia, where the app has seen very strong organic growth.

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