Grovara, the largest B2B global marketplace for U.S. natural and organic brands, announced today the closing of a $5.5 million seed round financing to transform global commerce. David Pottruck led the round and was named Executive Chairman, and he was joined by SPINS, Bluestein Ventures, Spiral Sun Ventures, Siddhi Capital, CEAS Investments, and E and A Venture Capital LLC.
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Grovara Co-Founders Abu Kamara, CEO (left), and Peter Groverman, CIO. (Photo by Brand Bridge Ltd.)
The new investment will be used to expand sales and support resources in key regions worldwide and appoint leadership for brands, sales, and business development. Grovara will also invest in additional supply chain team members, roll out marketing initiatives, develop global partnerships, and continue with product enhancements to its first-to-market technology platform.
“We are happy to be joined by new investors and continue with some long-term partners who have helped us get to this point,” says Grovara Co-Founder and now CEO Abu Kamara, who previously served as Grovara’s President. “Grovara is transforming global commerce for U.S. consumer brands with the first B2B global marketplace for U.S. natural and organic brands. When you lower barriers and simplify exporting to a marketplace, you create tremendous opportunities for brands and retailers to grow their business. It’s a game-changer.”
The bridge round comes at a time when the natural and organic food and beverage market and B2B ecommerce are surging. The global natural & organic products market is worth $327B with U.S. brands accounting for $110B, while a recent study of global B2B buyers found 87% of them are purchasing from online marketplaces.
“For as challenging as the last year has been, it has greatly accelerated wellness and digital transformation. Our online B2B global marketplace is positioned perfectly to shepherd this growth and put the healthiest, highest-quality products in front of more retailers who previously did not have access,” says Grovara Co-Founder Peter Groverman, who stepped away from his CEO role to fill the newly created Chief Innovation Officer position. “With this funding round, we can accelerate the onboarding of brands and buyers in our ecosystem to discover, connect and grow their international business.”
In 2020, Grovara launched its technology platform and despite the disruption related to the coronavirus pandemic, continued to grow its portfolio. In 2021, the company anticipates onboarding 200 new brands and 350 additional retailers.
Grovara’s platform, built on a decade of exporting experience, brings access, visibility, and transparency to both brands and buyers via pricing, brand and market insights, and a modern B2C user experience for B2B business.
Nine out of 10 U.S. wellness brands do not export their products, primarily due to the complexities and risks of international business. Grovara’s technology platform is built to manage the export lifecycle and provide wellness-focused, insights-driven data that accelerates growth and scale. Grovara connects major U.S. natural and organic brands like GT’s Living Foods, Wholesome Sweeteners, Honey Stinger, True Citrus, and That’s It with key global retailers like Walmart Mexico, Cencosud, Whole Foods U.K., and Costco Taiwan.
“My career has been focused on transformational technology and how consumers and businesses use it to create better outcomes,” says Pottruck, former CEO of Charles Schwab. “It’s easy to see how Grovara is well-positioned for this moment with the best technology, the most authority, and industry-leading partners.”
Grovara was recently named a finalist for the Philadelphia Alliance for Capital and Technology (PACT) Enterprise Awards, to be held on June 28, in the Technology Startup category.
ABOUT GROVARA: Grovara is the first B2B global marketplace for natural and organic brands. Grovara increases access to wellness products for global consumers with its proprietary technology platform that connects the most promising U.S. healthy consumer brands with vetted global retailers. With only 1 in 10 wellness brands selling overseas, Grovara enables exporting with visibility, transparency and an intuitive user experience, creating a pathway for dynamic growth potential for American manufacturers and added value for worldwide retailers. More information on Grovara’s market-leading processes and partners can be found at www.grovara.com.