Buddha Brands, maker of better-for-you, plant-powered food and beverages, has announced a $3 million round of funding from leading capital investment corporations BDC Capital and Investissement Quebec. In 2020, Buddha Brands expanded into the U.S. market with the introduction of its Hungry Buddha Keto Bars and are now in more than 1,500 natural independent retailers and grocery stores nationwide. The new investment will help accelerate the brand’s U.S. expansion via sales and marketing initiatives, as well as research and development for future projects to further its momentum within the category.
“My co-founders and I started Buddha Brands with all of our savings and have been purposely self-funded from the start, so we are thrilled to have this support from BDC Capital and Investissement Quebec,” said Chris Magnone, CEO and co-founder at Buddha Brands. “Our goal from the beginning was to get our business to a specific stage before taking outside capital in order to push ourselves to be strategic, thoughtful, and impactful with the funds we had. This investment comes at the perfect moment for us, giving us the opportunity to further increase our velocity and distribution, support the retailers who have supported us, invest in our team, and generate more market awareness of our low-sugar, clean ingredients, plant-powered foods that not only taste good, but make you feel good.”
According to SPINS data, the snack bar category was down 20-40 percent during 2020, however, plant-based and low-sugar bars were outpacing the segment by 20-50 percent. Despite COVID-19 decimating the sector, Buddha Brands has seen tremendous growth and success with its Hungry Buddha Keto Bars. Since the launch, the bars have gained significant support from consumers and major retailers on both sides of the border, including Sprouts, H-E-B, Wegmans, Meijer, Costco, Thrive Market, Amazon, Loblaws, Whole Foods, Metro, and more, and are on a clear path to exponentially increase velocity and distribution with this investment.
Focused on building a company that reflects a conscious effort to live better, eat better, and do better, the co-founders set out to create a snack bar with only clean, plant-powered and purposeful ingredients. As a category disruptor, Hungry Buddha Keto Bars are the first keto-friendly bars on the market made without sugar alcohols, palm oils, and other major allergens like dairy, soy, or peanuts. The line is Certified Vegan and Keto, Non-GMO Project Verified, gluten-free, and produced in a dedicated peanut-free facility.
“We purposely entered the allergy-friendly segment, as we felt those consumers didn’t have many options available,” said Magnone. “Hungry Buddha Keto Bars are a snack everyone can enjoy, regardless of dietary or allergen restrictions. They’re made with MCT oil, sunflower seed, pea protein, and monk fruit, making them a conscious and purposeful snack.” Hungry Buddha Keto Bars are available in four flavors: Chocolate Chip, Coconut Cocoa, Espresso Brownie, and Triple Chocolate.
“We are very enthusiastic to support Buddha Brands through the next stage of their growth and are confident in the leadership team’s ability to continue to disrupt the growing better-for-you food and beverage industry with their innovative products,” said Mathieu Rinaldi, director, growth and transition capital, of BDC Capital.
To learn more about Buddha Brands and Hungry Buddha® Keto Bars, visit www.buddhabrands.com, or follow Buddha Brands on Instagram (@BuddhaBrandsCo), Facebook (@BuddhaBrandsCo) and Twitter (@BuddhaBrandsCo).