Stockport-based healthy snack brand, Real Handful, has launched ranges with four major UK supermarket after having received a £250,000 investment from the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF) via Maven Equity Finance.
After receiving the funding in January 2020 to invest in product development, Real Handful has launched 12 new products and struck deals with Morrisons, Waitrose, Ocado and Sainsbury’s supermarkets to reach more consumers. The Stockport-founded brand has also secured a six-figure investment from the UK Government’s Future Fund to further finance the snack-food company’s growth.
The business has also used NPIF’s initial investment to rebuild its website and focus on its sales and marketing activities, with an increase in digital sales of over 300%. With its follow-on funding, the company plans to double its staff from next year, as well as launching into North America.
In addition, Real Handful has also benefited from exporting advice as part of the GC Business Growth Hub’s ‘Global Scale Up’ scheme, as well as receiving support on its growth strategy from the Maven and NPIF teams.
Joe Taylor, co-founder at Real Handful, said:
We’ve seen a dramatic change in snacking habits over the past 12 months as well as a big switch towards online purchases. Thanks to the funding from NPIF and Maven, we’ve been able to accelerate our product development plans and we’re delighted that so many major UK retailers are as excited as we are about the disruptive new savoury snacking options we’ve launched.
“The follow-on investment we’ve recently received as part of the Future Fund scheme will go a significant way to helping us scale these new ranges even further, grow our team and take the next steps on our international export journey.”
Lou Cordwell, Chair of the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership (GM LEP), said:
This is another great example of a business achieving impressive growth after securing an investment from NPIF. It is also very encouraging to see a Greater Manchester business entering new markets by exporting its products globally.
“NPIF is an important partner to the GM LEP and together we will continue to do all we can to support the innovative and growing SMEs that will power Greater Manchester’s recovery beyond the pandemic.”
Grant Peggie at British Business Bank, said:
Real Handful is another example of an innovative, growing business based in the North with international ambitions. Real Handful is seeing excellent returns from its investment in digital sales and its innovative approach to product development and we would envourage other growing businesses to consider whether NPIF funding can support their growth ambitions..
Tom Morgan, investment manager at Maven, said:
Real Handful has delivered exciting new listings in an extremely competitive market, bringing their healthy snacking alternatives to a wide range of new consumers. The growth we expect the business to see over the next 12 months is very exciting, and we have no doubt that Real Handful has a clear opportunity to deliver even greater success in both the UK and International markets in the years to come.”
Real Handful is a healthy snacking brand that aims to shake up the healthy snacking sector through its innovative flavour combinations, while offering products that are packed with naturally nutritious ingredients like fruits, nuts, seeds and pulses.
The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.