Monday, June 17, 2024

Yume raises AUD $2M in seed funding round led by Investible

Yume, an award-winning food redistribution platform that prevents food waste by connecting surplus food from manufacturers to businesses and charities that can use it, today announced it has secured AUD $2 million in seed funding. Asia-Pacific based VC firm, Investible, led this round bringing Yume’s total funding to AUD$7 million, with new and previous investors including Launch Vic, Goodrich Group, Veolia as well as angel investor Pitzy Folk.

The new funds will allow Yume to build on its leading position in Australia and supercharge its technology capabilities in preparation for international expansion. The Melbourne based, Certified Social Enterprise, is on a pathway to double its headcount by the end of 2024 with 75% of this growth to be focused on technology and product teams.

Founded in 2016 by serial entrepreneur Katy Barfield OAM, Yume is revolutionising the way food manufacturers handle excess inventory. By digitising and automating the traditionally manual processes used for sales and donation, Yume allows manufacturers to automate workflows, while also providing powerful data that allows them to boost revenue and minimise food waste. Alongside its partners including Unilever, Kellanova (Kellogg’s) and Mars Food and Nutrition, Yume is pioneering new standards for inventory clearance and donations, setting a precedent for the industry. The Yume platform has redistributed almost 8 million kilograms of surplus food from manufacturers to other businesses and charities. As a result, Yume has returned over $22million to leading companies who use the platform to commercialise surplus food and has donated over one million meals to charities.

“Australia has a food waste problem, in fact, it’s a 7.6 million tonne problem. The amount of land used to grow wasted food in Australia covers more than 25 million hectares, a landmass larger than the state of Victoria,” says Yume founder and CEO Katy Barfield.

“Yume was founded to eradicate this problem and our platform has grown rapidly as large food manufacturers have been able to utilise our technology to connect surplus food to Australian businesses and charities, reducing waste and increasing their revenue. This latest round of funding will support us as we invest in our technology and team to further push for a world without waste.”

Yume is the latest tech startup to join Investible’s Climate Tech Fund, a dedicated early stage VC fund that invests in founders that are creating high-growth technology enabled companies with a positive climate impact. Yume is another female-led company that this fund has invested in, with nearly half (48%) of Investible’s Climate Tech Fund portfolio including companies with a female founding member and 21% being solely led by women.

This funding round marks a first for Investible, with three of the VC firm’s vehicles investing together in the company. Investible’s Early Stage Fund 2 and Club Investible syndicate joined the Investible Climate Tech Fund to fill out this round.

“Combine the ambitious and proven team with a massive market opportunity which has been validated by blue chip customers, we have the workings of a strong and impactful business”, says Investible Chief Investment Officer Charlie Ill. “On this basis, Investible has made a very high conviction investment, with members of our Club Investible group investing alongside our two Funds. Yume is backed by our network of over 180 experienced investors and business leaders, supporting the great work being done by Katy and her team”.

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