Plant-based yogurt and dessert producer The Collaborative, formerly known as The Coconut Collaborative, has appointed Meiky Tollman as its new CEO and announced a $7 million Series A investment from PowerPlant Ventures.
The UK-based company plans to use the investment to help fuel its rapid expansion in the US market, which it first entered in February 2018, in addition to ‘brand transformation’.
Most recently, Tollman has served as the general manager, COO and executive VP International at Sabra Dipping Company, a US producer of Middle Eastern style food, for 15 years.
“For me, coming to The Collaborative is motivating and inspiring to work with one of the fastest-growing category growth drivers of plant-based products on the market that is also purpose driven,” said Tollman, newly appointed CEO and board member of The Collaborative.
Based in Los Angeles, PowerPlant Ventures provides capital and strategic support to natural food brands which reportedly deliver healthier options in more sustainable ways. PowerPlant’s prior investments include Beyond Meat, Vive Organic, Rebbl and most recently plant-based protein beverage brand Owyn.
“At PowerPlant we are constantly on the lookout for plant-based food brands that are providing an answer to consumer demands and challenging the status quo – The Collaborative is doing that as a remarkable brand with a premium breadth of products that combine wholesome goodness, great taste which is equivalent to or better than dairy alternatives, low sugar, and better-for-you ingredients,” said Mark Rampolla, co-founder and partner of PowerPlant Ventures.
In addition to the funding round and appointment, The Collaborative has announced that it is tripling its current line-up of offerings. Like others in its range, the new additions are low in sugar, gluten-free, and non-GMO.
The expansion includes plant-based desserts such as Vanilla Rice Pudding, Double Chocolate Mousse, and Chocolate Pudding varieties, as well as updates to its existing line of plant-based yogurt alternatives to include news sizes.
“Not only will this investment and partnership allow us to leverage the momentum of our growth, but also further expedite our expansion into more conventional and natural grocery channels. We are honoured to have the support of one of the best plant-based food investment firms who sees and believes in our essence, mission, and vision,” added Tollman.
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