Olio, the app that permits you to share undesirable meals gadgets together with your neighbours, picks up £6M Collection A – TechCrunch

Olio, the hyperlocal meals sharing app that wishes to assist deal with the world’s meals waste epidemic, has picked up $6 million in Collection A funding.

The U.Okay. startup affords a location-based app and web site that permits you to listing and put up a photograph of undesirable meals gadgets to be shared with different folks in the identical neighbourhood. That’s, meals that you simply would possibly in any other case throw away.

The corporate, Olio co-founder and CEO Tessa Clarke informed me in a name earlier this week, was born out of the concept a bottom-up, group strategy — pushed by particular person behaviour — is probably the most scalable technique to reduce down on the quantity of meals households sometimes waste. She says a couple of third of meals manufacturing is thrown away and/or allowed to perish, which largely results in landfill, and that meals within the house represents about half of this.

The startup helps companies deal with the issue, too. Dubbed the “Food Waste Heroes Programme,” Olio is enabling corporations, similar to retailers or these working occasions and company canteens, to utilise the Olio platform and group to turn into “zero food waste” organisations.

This sees corporations charged a payment and in return Olio will dispatch its hundreds of volunteers, who’ve been vetted and are skilled in meals hygiene, to return to their shops or retailers and acquire undesirable meals gadgets. The volunteers then {photograph} and listing the gadgets on the app and provide themselves up as hyperlocal assortment factors. Most gadgets are made out there for sharing and picked up/distributed in only a few hours.

Clarke says the startup can be exploring the likelihood transferring to a premium mannequin, the place probably the most lively customers of the platform pay for a subscription that provides them entry to extra value-add options. The Holy Grail of hyperlocal promoting is an untapped alternative, too, on condition that the app already boasts over half one million customers.

What’s most putting when listening to the Olio co-founder speak in regards to the younger firm is how mission-driven she, her crew and the app’s group are. That’s as a result of not solely is meals waste an costly downside — over $1 trillion per 12 months, apparently — however the environmental dent meals manufacturing and distribution makes is big, whereas a rising inhabitants implies that meals shortages will realistically turn into a problem sooner or later. Think about that Olio can and, to a sure lengthen, already helps to alleviate meals poverty, and it’s simple to know why.

I additionally questioned Clarke on Olio’s reliance on volunteers and she or he mentioned that the corporate at the moment receives much more volunteer functions than it may course of. Extra broadly, because the time spent being lively on the platform is unlikely to translate right into a full-time job, because it solely works by being very distributed and remaining steadfastly hyperlocal. Volunteers additionally get to maintain as much as 10 % of the meals they acquire.

In the meantime, Olio’s Collection A spherical was led by Octopus Ventures, with current buyers together with Accel, Quadia, and Quentin Griffiths (co-founder of ASOS & Achica) following on. Different new buyers becoming a member of Octopus embrace Lord Waheed Alli’s Silvergate Investments 2, Bran Investments, Julien Codorniou (Fb) and Jason Stockwood (Match.com, Merely Enterprise).

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