German foodtech startup the nu company raises €14 million, including from Formula 1 world champion

The Leipzig-based foodtech startup the nu company, who are the creators of the vegan and sugar-reduced chocolate bar line nucao and the organic protein brand numove, has successfully completed its first financing round of €14 million.

Notable Series A investors include lead investor DLF Venture, as well as Five Seasons Ventures and DX Ventures. The Board of Directors will also welcome to its ranks Tina Müller, CEO of the international perfumery chain Douglas and Andrea Gisle Joosen, a senior executive with expertise in branding, strategy and business development. Additional investors in the €14 million round include Formula 1 world champion and sustainability entrepreneur Nico Rosberg, BackBone Ventures and the Austrian food VC fund Square One Foods.

Founded in 2016 by three industrial engineers, Christian Fenner, Thomas Stoffels and Mathias Tholey, the purpose-driven company has committed itself to healthy, plastic-free and climate-positive snacks. Driven by its company DNA “food for a nu world”, the startup is uncompromisingly rethinking the future of food: all products are of natural origin and of certified organic quality, vegan, free of refined sugar and wrapped in specially developed home-compostable cellulose packaging.

Co-Founder and CMO Christian Fenner said: “We want to turn the food industry on its head – so that the focus is no longer solely on profit, but on the future of our planet and the health of its people. This Series A will help us bring more products to market that can bring about a real and positive change in the food industry. In addition, we want our products to be even easier to access throughout Europe, whether at the local supermarket or with a single click online. This is why we are currently looking to expand our team with the best talents in key sectors and geographies who share our passion for positive and sustainable change.”

According to co-founder and CFO Thomas Stoffels, in 2021 the nu company recorded triple-digit sales growth for the fourth consecutive year, with its products already available in over 10,000 stores. Additionally, for every product sold, the company plants a tree in cooperation with its partner Eden Reforestation Projects and is expected to surpass the 10 million tree milestone this year. 

Clément Helinckx, Principal at lead investor DLF Venture, explained: “What convinced us was that the team would never be cutting corners in the wrong areas. The goal is always to bring a healthier option to everyone’s table without neglecting the environment. The result is excellent consumer engagement and outstanding growth rates. It’s exciting to see a brand spread its wings so quickly. This shows a clear adjustment of the market and a great deal of potential to trigger long-term changes.”