Unconventional bottled soup brand Tio Gazpacho has completed a Series A funding run, securing $1.25 million and a lead investment from General Mills’ 301 INC.
“We strongly believe in brands eager to make a difference in the marketplace and are thrilled to work with Tio Gazpacho to maximize its success within the food industry,” said John Haugen, Vice President and General Manager of 301 INC, in a press release.
Tio Gazpacho initially cited a round goal of $500,000, but raised the number after gaining interest from potential investors. Tio Gazpacho Founder, Austin Allan, said that he adjusted the brand’s angle and terminology to secure the $1.25 million funded.
“We’ve reinvented soup for a modern, on-the-go consumer,” Allan said. “And so I changed my tone a little bit in my fundraise and started talking about us as this cutting-edge soup brand that leverages technology in a way that’s never been done before and is also a soup-beverage hybrid.”
The soup brand said that it plans use the funding towards sales and marketing, and product development to expand the brand into a line of smaller and more conventionally-used soups.
In addition to a backing by 301 INC General Mills, Tio Gazpacho has also received partnership with CircleUp, which will match other investments made. Allan declined to name a Miami-based investor and another company, which both requested to remain anonymous.
“I think what we’re really excited about with Tio is really the convergence of a number of trends,” Haugen continued. “Reframing that soup opportunity in a fresh, portable great-tasting way, we think is really exciting. And if you also think about how people use the product, it has the opportunity to span a number of different occasions.”
Allan stated that the company looks forward to 301 INC’s influence on its growth through market opportunities on its current products. Eventually, said Allen, the company wants to expand along the East Coast once receiving input on how to market the unique brand.
“It’s early in the product life cycle and I think people can discover it and look for ways to incorporate it into their daily routine,” Haugen said. “It also warrants continuing to think about different merchandising options and testing different ways in.”
Tio Gazpacho’s four-SKU line of soup drinks can currently be found in natural retailers in metro New York, and Miami, FL.
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