MV team

Source: Mission Ventures

From left: Non-executive director Nigel Parrott, operations manager Louis Bedwell, co-founder Paddy Willis and non-executive director John Stapleton

The Grocery Accelerator has rebranded as Mission Ventures to mark its expanded remit as it continues to support the growth of fmcg challenger brands.

The mentoring and investment scheme was set up in 2015 by a trio of industry leaders to help promising new food and drinks brands get off the ground.

Led by Plum Baby co-founder Paddy Willis, Little Dish co-founder John Stapleton and Ape Snacks co-founder Nigel Parrott, Mission Ventures now aims to expand its breadth of activities by aligning with corporations, overseas agencies and funds to help startups and SMEs grow.

Building on a successful pilot in 2019, the company has also announced it is partnering with Australian food body FIAL, to support the growth of Australian brands who wish to expand into the UK.

Mission Ventures co-founder and CEO Willis said: “The relaunch as Mission Ventures marks the start of a really exciting year ahead.

“We have already secured four agreements in 2020 with industry and funders to deliver ambitious growth plans for over 20 new challenger brands. The partnership with FIAL acknowledges the value we can add from our collective experience of building and scaling successful brands in the UK.”

Three further partnerships are due to be announced “shortly”.

They “not only underpin our growth plans but reinforce the position we’ve held since 2015 as the UK’s leading food and drink accelerator”, Willis added.

Since launching in 2015, 17 companies have participated in the Grocery Accelerator, including Troo Foods, Equinox Kombucha and Jim Jams Spreads.