Boutique food business Farro Fresh has raised an undisclosed amount of capital through a private investment partner which it plans to use to open its seventh supermarket next year.
The upmarket Auckland grocery chain operates six stores in Auckland, and will open its seventh in the Smales Farm commercial hub in Takapuna on Auckland's North Shore.
Farro confirmed to the Herald that it had completed a capital raise with Waterman Capital to accelerate the company's growth initiatives. It would not say how much cash was raised but it is understood to be a multi-million dollar sum.
Farro was founded by Janene and James Draper with a single store in Mt Wellington in 2013, selling upmarket and artisan food and beverage brands. In recent years it has been growing its store network, and plans to open two more stores after Takapuna.
The business started with 12 staff and has grown to employ more than 300 people in stores at Epsom, Grey Lynn, Mt Eden, Mt Wellington, North Shore and Orakei.
The company said it would use its new capital to: expand network growth through the addition of new stores, refurbish and expand current stores, improve internal systems to support growth and further enhance its customer experience.
Last year Farro told the Herald that it was on track to exceed $100 million in revenue for the first time in 2021.
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The Drapers and the Farro management team have partnered with local private investor Waterman Capital to provide the growth capital to support the next phase of growth.
"We have a number of exciting growth plans ahead of us and it has been refreshing to work with a like-minded New Zealand-based investor that shares Farro's core values and vision," James Draper said of the partnership.
"Since starting Farro over 15 years ago, we have sought to provide fresh, high-quality food and service, providing our customers with a trusted place to discover and shop for delicious food every week. With greater demand from customers seeking the superb shopping experience at Farro, we are delighted to announce the location of the company's seventh store at Smales Farm in Takapuna," Janene Draper said.
Farro is yet to expand its store network outside of Auckland.
Waterman Capital previously held a majority stake in NZX-listed meal kit company My Food Bag before selling out in an IPO last year.
A spokesman for Waterman Capital said the company was "excited to have the opportunity to build on the considerable success of the business alongside Janene, James and the rest of the Farro team.
"We believe that consumers are looking for greater choice and there is increasing demand for Farro's unique grocery offering," the spokesman said.