Smalls secures $19 million in latest investment round

NEW YORK — Smalls, a direct-to-consumer (DTC) fresh cat food brand, announced March 28 that it has raised $19 million in its latest funding round. The financing round was led by the Companion Fund and received participations from Left Lane Capital, Valor Capital, 301 INC, Founder Collective, General Mills Venture Capital Project and the Ohio State University Endowment Fund.

Launched in 2017, Smalls seeks to change the way people feed their cats by offering high-protein, fresh formulas for humans. According to the brand, the health and nutritional needs of cats have long been given secondary importance to those of dogs, with many brands tailoring their products to meet the needs of dogs.

“Cats have been chronically underserved and underinvested, even though cats live in 25% of US homes,” said Matt Michaelson, Smalls co-founder and chief executive officer. “Smalls is committed to investing exclusively in cats so we can continue to innovate for customers who desperately need healthier products.”

Smalls formulates his diets with a cat-first approachSource: Smalls

Although the United States is typically thought of as a dog-centric country, pet ownership trends show otherwise. According to David Sprinkle of Packaged Facts, who presented the company’s US Pet Market Outlook 2023 during Global Pet Expo 2023, there has been a gradual but steady decline in dog-owning households, while ownership of cats and other pets has continued to increase . From 2018 to 2022, the rate of dog households fell from 42% to 38%, while that of cat households increased from 23% to 24%. Cat now represents a growing market for the pet food and supplies industry.

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According to Smalls, the petcare industry is expected to exceed $277 billion in revenue by 2023, with pet owners continuing to invest in higher quality, customized and functional nutrition. Smalls hopes to capitalize on this movement, which shows no signs of slowing down, by offering more personalized nutrition to the more than 45.3 million cat parents in the United States.

“What sets Smalls apart is their unwavering commitment to improving the health and welfare of cats,” said Cindy Cole, DVM, technical partner at Companion Fund. “Cats are notoriously picky customers, but Smalls cracked the code to create fresh, minimally processed feeding plans that cats love, and we’re excited to be a part of their growth story.”

Smalls plans to use the funds to advance its Cat First mission and focus on more humane and sustainable nutrition. The investment will help the brand make its first foray into brick-and-mortar retail and expand its product offering. The brand will also expand its staff by almost 25%.

Continue reading News from pet food manufacturers.


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