Seeking to turn the world of snacks and ice cream on its head by offering a healthy alternative, Swedish-born keto snack bar, ice cream, and ice cream sandwich maker N!CK’S has raised $100 million in a Series C round. The sucrose-free funding will be used to further fuel N!CK’S expanding waistline throughout Europe and North America via new additions to the product portfolio and doubling the store count. Additionally, the magnificent Mr. N!CK will invest in further R&D efforts and the hiring of key talent and marketing initiatives.
Founded in 2017 by Carl Bäcklund and Niclas Luthman (yes, THE N!CK), the startups’ story emerges from one of that of a fellow sweet tooth. Back in 2014 Luthman was diagnosed as pre-diabetic, at which point he overhauled his entire diet, following a strict regimen of low-carb, anti-inflammatory foods, basically keto before keto was what we know as keto today. And for all the good that it did his health, Nic missed his favourite snacks. So what’s a trained mechanical and electronics engineer to do? Why engineer his own ice cream and snacks, of course.
For whatever the secret sauce is that they’re harbouring in Sweden, Luthman and Backlund have seemingly double-dipped their spoons into the tureen. Along the lines of darling Oatly, after only just 24 months on the US market, N!CK’S has become the top dog in the better-for-you ice cream category according to data analytics and market research company IRI.
If this metric wasn’t enough to get investors excited, N!CK’S also touts being the #1 new snack bar release on Amazon, has countrywide listings in the UK with WHSmith, doubled its year-over-year ice cream business in its home market of Sweden, and counts some 6,700 stores in the US.
“Healthier lifestyles and nutritional science just got a 100 million dollar boost,” said Luthman. “My dream is to change our relationship with snacking into an entirely positive thing. This investment round will make our message heard, and fuel the massive R&D effort ahead of us in making more and more snacks better-for-you and better for the planet.”
N!CK’S $100 million Series C round was led by food-tech omnipresent investor Kinnevik, Ambrosia Investments, and Temasek, with Gullspång, an early investor in Oatly, Peak Bridge, Capagro and Nicoya, filling out the round.
“We are incredibly excited to support N!CK’S on their mission of providing consumers with more choices of healthy ice cream and snacks. When we look at potential food investments, we look for companies that are addressing and taking advantage of tailwinds within consumption patterns, the importance of health and sustainability. N!CK’S fits squarely into these areas and we have been impressed by the strong market traction across the US and Europe, we look forward to joining their journey of building a global brand,” says Kinnevik’s Magnus Jakobson.