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Torg raises €2.7m in funding for AI-powered platform
FoodBev Media

FoodBev Media

11 April 2024

Torg raises €2.7m in funding for AI-powered platform

Torg, a German food-sourcing start-up, has secured €2.7 million in an oversubscribed seed round to transform the F&B purchasing process with its AI-powered platform. The round was led by Connect Ventures, with participation from existing investor FoodLabs and new investors, including Sondo, Ventures Together, Sameer Singh and Jonas Meynert. The funding will enable Torg, a Berlin-based market network, to advance its platform, broaden its supplier database and "build more intuitive tools for buyers to save time and make their jobs easier," the company said. Torg's platform has already collaborated with over 100,000 high-quality, verified food and beverage suppliers in Europe. According to the business, Torg uses machine learning and AI "to build the largest and most enriched database of suppliers in the food and beverage industry". Established to address the inefficiencies of the sourcing process, the company emerged from the challenges encountered with finding and verifying suppliers for private label and foodservice projects. This drive led to the development of a digital, user-friendly platform that enhances and simplifies the process, "mirroring the ease of e-commerce platforms." With Torg's solution, buyers can set up a product request in two minutes and distribute it to hundreds of relevant manufacturers. The platform captures data from various sources to identify, verify and vet suppliers. Torg's supplier database includes detailed profiles, certifications, product capabilities and relevant contact details. Hans Furuseth, co-founder and CEO at Torg, said: “Buyers have few good ways of finding new manufacturers. They rely on trade fairs which occur once a year and where less than 10% of global suppliers exhibit, or on desktop research, sifting through unverified websites. The market is much bigger than most buyers realise. We democratise private label products by opening up the market, creating more transparent supply chains, and putting less-known, quality suppliers on the map. Our goal is to create meaningful business connections for both sides of the market. In a way, we're Tinder for sourcing." Sitar Teli, partner at Connect Ventures, added: “The drivers are clear – consumers are demanding transparency, certifications and lower prices for the food they purchase and grocers and wholesalers are looking to own more of their supply chain in response. Torg enables this by creating the first digital sourcing platform for private label food and beverage, bringing sourcing decades ahead from where it is now.” Till Hoelzer, principal at FoodLabs, commented: “Torg is revolutionising food and beverage procurement, and the numbers speak for themselves: Over half of Torg buyers receive quotes 30% below their target price. Their platform not only reduces operational burdens but also enables the launch of superior and cheaper private-label products, meeting the growing demands of consumers."

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