kencko Raises 34M to Ensure You Get Your Daily Vegetable and Fruit

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first_imgYou’re supposed to have a 5-a-day fruit and veggie intake according to various national campaigns and the World Health Organization. However, according to the CDC, only 1/10 adults are achieving this guideline.   kencko want to change this.  The company, launched in 2016, offers pre-mixed drink packets comprised of 100% organic fruits and vegetables that do not need to be frozen or blended. Employing a direct-to-consumer, subscription model ensures that consumers can personalize their orders and schedule delivery right to their doorstep with standard shipping free.  Your first order even comes with a reusable BPA-free bottle  The company currently ships nationwide and also to Canada.AlleyWatch spoke with cofounder Ricardo Vice Santos about how the idea for the business sprung from a personal need to change the status quo, the company’s future plans, and recent round of funding.Who were your investors and how much did you raise? Although it was our seed, we had quite a few investors for this round. NextView Ventures, LocalGlobe, Kairos Ventures, and Max Ventures to name a few.Tell us about the product or service that kencko offers.kencko is a plant-based service that helps you reach your 5-a-day recommended fruit and veggie intake, by offering pre-mixed drink packets comprised of 100% organic fruits and vegetables. We offer convenient membership services that ship nationwide and to Canada.What inspired you to start kencko?My business partner, Tomas, began exploring the idea of helping people reach their 5-a-day after being diagnosed with acute gastritis. He was told that his ailment was treatable, but it would require a cocktail of pills for the rest of his life. Seeking another option, he threw himself into the world of alternative health and after settling on a 90 percent vegetable diet, he found that his condition had cleared without medicine. Realizing the effect something as simple as including more fruits and vegetables in your diet has on your life, he wanted to create a convenient way for more people to achieve this.How is kencko different?From our blends to our mission of increasing the quality of people’s lives in a convenient and honest way, there really isn’t another brand out there like us. We’re not just creating a product out of want but the needs of so many Americans. What’s even better is we’ve found a convenient way for them to introduce it to their daily routines, so it becomes a habit rather than an inconvenient chore.What market does kencko target and how big is it? Our target market is the 9 out of 10 Americans who aren’t reaching their 5 a day. From children to senior citizens, kencko is made for anyone who wants to live a long healthy life.Who do you consider to be your main competitors?Our main competitors range from unhealthy snacks and beverages to the high-priced juices sold in your local cold-pressed store.What’s your business model?kencko’s mission is to help you improve nutrition through habit, and we do that by providing delicious organic fruit and veggie drinks, each packed with different benefits. Given each person will have their own nutritional needs and goals, it was obvious from day one that we needed to be a DTC and subscription based. This allows us to better understand our members and personalize our service to better suit their habitual needs.What was the funding process like?We were at the back-end of Techstars program, and we found that quite a lot of investors shared in our passion for helping people live healthier and more sustainable lives, so we ended up closing faster than our initial expectations.What are the biggest challenges that you faced while raising capital?Surprisingly, the biggest challenge faced has nothing to do with the actual act of raising capital. Raising capital is a full-time job and with that, as a founder, coping with the struggle of spending less time with my team was the hardest part. Ensuring that my team felt supported and the business was not negatively affected, when I was unable to be as present as usual, was a balancing act.What factors about your business led your investors to write the check?I think a combination of factors. The data and feedback provided from our happy members is always the one that tells the most about our business, coupled with our long-term vision for kencko and how we plan to deploy the capital once it lands in the bank.I think a combination of factors. The data and feedback provided from our happy members is always the one that tells the most about our business, coupled with our long-term vision for kencko and how we plan to deploy the capital once it lands in the bank.What are the milestones you plan to achieve in the next six months?In the next 6 months, we’ll look to continue our efforts to be a more sustainable company, as it’s one of the core values of our brand. We are also looking to diversify our product offerings and continuing to provide high-quality, convenient organic fruit and vegetable products to our customers.What advice can you offer companies in New York that do not have a fresh injection of capital in the bank?More often than not, entrepreneurs get caught in a “if only I had investors” trap. Don’t let that stop you from chasing your goal. Access to capital is a great tool to accelerate a business, but if you don’t have it that just means you’ll have to build your business at a slower but sustainable pace.What’s your favorite restaurant in the city?Tough question! Probably Black Flamingo in Brooklyn for the best vegan tacos ever.PREVIOUS POSTNEXT POST kencko Raises $3.4M to Ensure You Get Your Daily Vegetable and Fruit IntakeJuly 11, 2019 by AlleyWatch 407SHARESFacebookTwitterLinkedin Filed Under: #NYCTech, AlleyTalk, Angel/Seed, Business, E-Commerce, FoodTech, Funded in the Alley, Funded in the Alley, Funding, Funding News, Interviews, Startups Tagged With: Kairos Ventures, LocalGlobe, NextView Ventureslast_img

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