Leading meal delivery service backed by Hamilton Lane on behalf of New York State Common Retirement Fund, General Nutrition Centers (GNC), Armory Square Ventures, and Excell Partners
Geneva, NY – October 26, 2021 – RealEats, the meal delivery service that makes it simple for people to enjoy the nutritional benefits of real food, announced today it has raised $16.3 million in a Series A funding round. The round was led by Hamilton Lane (NASDAQ: HLNE) on behalf of the New York State Common Retirement Fund, which participated through its co-investment fund managed by the firm, and also includes health and wellness retailer GNC, Armory Square Ventures, and Excell Partners.
“We are thrilled to partner with such highly strategic and supportive investors who share our vision for a healthier food future,” said Dan Wise, founder & CEO, RealEats America Inc. “This capital raise is a testament to the dedication of our amazing team, the delicious real meals they make, and our incredibly loyal customers across the country. RealEats is poised to expand significantly with this infusion of capital and the growing consumer demand for healthy real food.”
Leading private markets investment management firm Hamilton Lane led the round via a co-investment fund it manages on behalf of the New York State Common Retirement Fund, and will represent investors on the RealEats Board of Directors. David Helgerson, Managing Director of Direct Equity Investments at Hamilton Lane, commented, “RealEats is taking a leadership role in the healthy food revolution through its innovative, high-quality and convenient food options. We are excited to support the Company’s expansion across the country as it inspires customers through a unique combination of real food offerings, including many from the Finger Lakes region of New York.”
Global health and wellness brand GNC Holdings, LLC, made a substantial investment in the Series A round. Yong Kai Wong, GNC’s Executive Vice-Chairman, has joined the RealEats Board of Directors and is working closely with the company to launch several strategic collaborations, including launching RealEats meals on GNC.com in early November as the first fresh meal brand available to purchase through GNC’s website. “GNC’s heritage has always been about helping our consumers Live Well and as we expand our health and wellness platform solutions, we couldn’t be more excited to partner with RealEats as part of our GNC Ventures initiative, to provide fresh, healthy meals to consumers across the country,” commented Yong Kai Wong.
Armory Square Ventures, a technology venture capital firm and community catalyst in upstate New York, added to their earlier investment in RealEats. “We have worked closely with Dan, Erik, Rebecca and the RealEats team since investing in the seed round two years ago. Over that period, RealEats provided excellent culinary offerings to a growing set of passionate customers through a pandemic. Now that many more people are spending time at home and the lines between work and home have blurred, we believe RealEats will continue to scale,” said Somak Chattopadhyay, Managing Partner at Armory Square Ventures. “We are also pleased to invest again alongside our longtime partner Hamilton Lane, the New York State Common Retirement Fund and GNC.”
Excell Partners, a venture capital fund that invests in high-tech high-growth startups in New York State, also increased their investment in RealEats. "Finding healthy, high quality meals for your family is even more important today and RealEats helps consumers achieve that," said Rami Katz, Excell's COO. "This is our fourth investment in RealEats and we are pleased to continue supporting the company’s tremendous growth."
The Series A raise will help take the RealEats brand national and accelerate the move into their new 80,000 square foot facility in Geneva, NY where the company plans to continue to create much needed jobs and help support the local community. The funds will also fuel the company’s product innovation pipeline and support the launch of a much-anticipated new meal line that will be debuting this year.
RealEats (realeats.com) is a weekly subscription meal delivery service that makes it simple to enjoy the nutritional benefits of real food. The company, which was founded in 2017 by a busy single dad who struggled to put healthy food on the table for his family, is on a mission to build a healthier food future by offering a wide array of clean meals that incorporate fresh nutritionally dense ingredients – many of which are sourced locally. RealEats is headquartered in the Finger Lakes agricultural region of New York. For more information about RealEats and to join the real food movement, visit RealEats.com, or find us on Facebook at Facebook.com/RealEatsMeals, Instagram at @RealEatsFood or Twitter at @realeatsfood.
About Hamilton Lane
Hamilton Lane (NASDAQ: HLNE) is a leading private markets investment management firm providing innovative solutions to sophisticated investors around the world. Dedicated exclusively to private markets investing for 30 years, the firm currently employs approximately 475 professionals operating in offices throughout North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. Hamilton Lane has $757 billion in assets under management and supervision, composed of $92 billion in discretionary assets and $665 billion in advisory assets, as of June 30, 2021. Hamilton Lane specializes in building flexible investment programs that provide clients access to the full spectrum of private markets strategies, sectors and geographies. For more information, please visit www.hamiltonlane.com or follow Hamilton Lane on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/hamilton-lane/.
About the New York State Common Retirement Fund
The New York State Common Retirement Fund is the third largest public pension fund in the United States. The Fund holds and invests the assets of the New York State and Local Retirement System on behalf of more than one million state and local government employees and retirees and their beneficiaries. The Fund has consistently been ranked as one of the best managed and best funded plans in the nation. For more information: https://www.osc.state.ny.us/common-retirement-fund.
GNC is a leading global health and wellness brand that provides high quality science-based products and solutions consumers need to live mighty, live fit, and live well.
The brand touches consumers worldwide by providing its products and services through company-owned retail locations, domestic and international franchise locations, digital commerce and strong wholesale and retail partnerships across the globe. GNC’s diversified, multi-channel business model has worldwide reach and a well-recognized, trusted brand. By combining exceptional innovation, product development capabilities and an extensive global distribution network, GNC manages a best in class product portfolio.
About Armory Square Ventures
Armory Square Ventures is a seed and early-stage venture capital firm, a community catalyst, and an optimism engine for ecosystems outside Silicon Valley. With offices in the Finger Lakes and New York City, the firm invests in software and technology-enabled services companies in emerging entrepreneurial ecosystems that are often overlooked by other investors. The fund’s investments include ACV Auctions (NASDAQ:ACVA), Agronomic Technology Corporation (acquired by Yara), BentoBox CMS (acquired by Fiserv), Clerio Vision, Good Uncle (acquired by Aramark), Heretto, RealEats, Squarefoot, StorySlab, Vengo Labs, Vizbee and UCM Digital. For more information, please visit www.armorysv.com.
About Excell Partners
Excell is a VC fund that invests in high-tech high-growth startups in New York State focused on Upstate NY. Excell combines generating returns that rank in the top-quartile of its benchmarks, with supporting regional economic development by providing entrepreneurs with hands-on support as well as investment capital. Excell’s Portfolio includes investments in Medical Devices, Materials, Energy, Biotech, Agtech, Imaging, and IT/Software ventures across New York State with an added focus of investing in minority and women owned ventures. www.ExcellNY.com.