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Thrive Market raises $111 million for its online organic grocery store

TechCrunch TechCrunch 27/06/2016 Katie Roof

Buy organic groceries online, at an affordable price. That’s the mantra of Los Angeles-based Thrive Market, which has raised a significant $111 million Series B funding round, led by Invus.

Thrive, which competes with similar online grocery services like Vitacost, believes there is a significant market opportunity to make natural foods more accessible to consumers and they’ve been growing fast.  Launched less than two years ago, the startup is on track for over $120 million in annual revenue, the team tells TechCrunch.

Thrive cuts out the middleman and buys from brands directly, which is why the company is able to offer items that are at a lower price point than what you see at Whole Foods and other health food stores. While there is a $60 annual membership fee, the company promises that Thrive goods are available for up to 50% off standard retail prices. There are now more than 300,000 paying members.

Brands include Annie’s, Zico, Yogi and Thrive’s own name-bearing products. In addition to organic, Thrive also carries gluten-free, paleo-friendly and GMO-free items.

“The business has been growing like a rocketship,” CEO Gunnar Lovelace tells TechCrunch. “The market for natural and organic products is growing so fast.”

Lovelace said that half of Thrive’s business is coming from women in the U.S. midwest and southern regions. He said that the lower prices means the company is able to reach people who traditionally didn’t buy health foods.

Thrive expects to use the new funding to expand its infrastructure and also to build out its content business. Lovelace said that in addition to recipes and educational material, the team wants to include health-related “journalistic” written content and also documentary videos.

The new funding adds to the $30 million that Thrive raised last year. Existing investors Greycroft Partners, e.ventures and Cross Culture Ventures also participated in this current round. Other investors include celebrities Demi Moore and John Legend.

“The Thrive team has done an incredible job executing this innovative model and has consistently performed beyond our expectations,” said Dana Settle, co-founder and partner at Greycroft. “We are thrilled to continue to support them.”

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