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Healthy food powder start-up Huel fed £20m by hungry investors

Huel has bagged funding from its first outside investor - who said people around the company were raving about the food powder product.

The nutritional powdered food firm Huel has been fed £20m by a major investor - the first external investment in the company since it was founded.

The UK start-up claims the sum from WeTransfer backer Highland Europe will go towards new products and global expansion.

A portmanteau of “human fuel”, Huel has not received any outside investment since Julian Hearn and James Collier began the company in 2015.

It now claims to have sold 25 million meals across 80 different countries - with teams based in the UK, Los Angeles and Berlin.

Welcoming the investment, Mr Hearn said: “Huel has been profitable since day one and is on track to triple turnover this year.

“In order to accelerate growth, expand our product portfolio and reach new markets, we decided to take external funding into the company.

“We’re excited that Highland Europe shares our vision and is now giving us the means and a wealth of experience to scale Huel into a global leader.

“These developments present a really exciting time for Huel and the ‘complete food’ category in general. We expect further innovation will follow as a consequence soon.”


Huel the ‘food of the future’

The brand is trying to pitch itself as the “food of the future”, tapping into a growing market of people who consider themselves too “time poor” to make a proper meal.

It is also aiming to fight food wastage with its powdered meal products - which Huel claims contain all the nutritions need on a daily basis.

Highland Europe partner Stan Laurent said: “We knew that Julian and his team had created a special brand before even meeting them - people around us were raving about Huel.

“It’s a textbook example of the next generation of e-commerce businesses - a big mission and brand, innovative products and a superb business model.

“We’re looking forward to helping Julian and his team scale the business across the globe.”


How Huel food powder works


The food powder purports to contain all the protein, carbs, fats, mineral and vitamins people need to have a healthy diet.

It is formulated by co-founder Mr Collier - who has a bachelor of science qualification in nutrition, as well as 25 years on-the-job experience in nutrition and dietetics.

Getting the powder down you requires mixing the food dust with water in a shaking cup and gulping it down.

It may not come as a surprise to know that Huel also sells “flavour boost” powders.