Hackney Gelato

The brand’s latest NPD - a limited edition gingerbread gelato - is available in Ocado

Luxury ice cream brand Hackney Gelato is targeting a bigger share of the market after smashing a £600k crowdfunding round.

It has so far raised £667k from more than 312 backers on the Crowdcube platform, with the campaign valuing the challenger at £10m.

The business started out in the foodservice channel in 2015, working with Michelin-star restaurants and hotel, but has since moved into grocery.

It scored its first major retail listing in 2019 with Waitrose and now supplies Tesco, Ocado, and Gorillas, as well as working with BrewDog. Take-home tub retail sales at the brand have grown 142.4% to £880k [NielsenIQ 52 w/e 11 September 2021], according to the latest category report in The Grocer.

Revenues at the business, which is backed by venture capital firm Pembroke VCT, have grown ten-fold in the past four years to £2.4m.

It plans to use money raised from the crowdfunding round to double the size of its kitchen and warehouse, grow the sales team and invest in in-store marketing and sampling to bring new consumers to the brand.

“The last few years have been crazy,” said co-founder Enrico Pavoncelli, who worked as a chef at London Michelin-star restaurant Locanda Locatelli before launching the brand.

“We’ve gone from selling gelato at market stalls in Hackney to being stocked nationwide in the likes of Ocado, Waitrose and Tesco.

“There is a clear shift towards luxury within the ice cream category, and we want more people to discover how good carefully crafted Italian gelato can be.

“It’s an exciting time and we’re only just getting started.”