The founders of multi-award-winning and rapidly growing wine-selling start-up Vinomofo had been hunting for a start-up in the meal delivery space to back for more than a year before they found their perfect candidate in Nourissh.
Nourissh is a collaboration between serial technology entrepreneur Scott Julian and sports kinesiologist Amanda Campbell. Ms Campbell became passionate about the power of nutrition after fully recovering from a severe stroke from multiple sclerosis that left half her body paralysed.
Nourissh delivers weekly sets of nutritionally balanced meals to homes throughout Melbourne and plans to expand nationwide by the end of 2016.
Nourissh is not the first company in Australia to try delivering cooked meals. Beyond restaurant behemoth Menulog, which sold for $855 million earlier this year, there are a handful of start-ups working on a similar offering.
Vinomofo co-founder Justin Dry said it was so convinced about the founding team and vision that it invested $250,000 before the company had even launched.
Following earlier successes
“We’d seen similar services take off in the US and other markets so we were looking for a local version to back, so we could use it too,” Dry says. “The fact the heart of the start-up is someone who truly understands health, because Amanda has a chronic condition, is very powerful.”
The seed investment is the first made by the start-up, which will also advertise Nourissh to its 330,000-plus customers in Melbourne.
Vinomofo has had a mixed history with its own investors, after an early-stage cash crunch had it sell 70 per cent of the business to Catch Group, before raising the funds required to buy it back.
“Our experiences have definitely helped guide our investment philosophy. We will always back the founder’s decisions. And it was important for us to allow them to have a huge chunk of the business, so they don’t lose the motivation,” Mr Dry said.
Ms Campbell says her motivation for running Nourissh goes beyond the normal desire for a start-up founder to strike it big, following her earlier health problems.
“I used the very best in Western medicine and was recovering it, but when I combined that with nutrition and diet, the results were profound. So this start-up comes straight from my heart,” she said.
While Nourissh creates the menus and meals, the sourcing of ingredients and food delivery is outsourced, a model Ms Campbell says would continue because it is key to the company’s scalability.
“We’re approaching it aware it’s not just a food company, we’re also a logistics company,” she says.
Nourissh delivers about 60 boxes of meals to 50 customers in Melbourne as a subscription service. The funds will go towards marketing and bringing in new customers.