The co-founders of Australian tech success story Aconex are among the investors in a $3 million funding round for Fresho, an online platform that lets restaurants order produce directly from suppliers.
Fresho was founded in 2016 by high school friends James Andronis of Clamms Seafood and former EY mergers and acquisitions associate director Huw Birrell.
Mr Andronis said his experience running Clamms showed that the majority of the industry was still manually inputting orders on their computers, or relying on paper-based processes.
Mr Andronis said in an industry that was “very antiquated” it was a slow start, but now more than $1 million in transactions going through the platform every day with 10,000 suppliers and restaurants.
As well as letting restaurants order from suppliers, Fresho provides invoicing, warehouse management, product pricing and reporting tools.
The company has raised $9 million so far and its latest raise came at a valuation of $21.1 million, according to ASIC documents.
Mr Jasper said about Fresho: “There’s a lot that we like about the company and, while operating in a different industry, we see a lot of similarities with the Aconex business model and the existence of a strong network effect.”
The start-up has already won customers such as Scicluna’s, De Costi Seafood, Kailis Bros and Andrews Meat, as well as a mix of restaurants and hospitality stores ranging from Rockpool and Movida to Bakers Delight.
Salta Capital’s David Tarascio said the fund was attracted to the food tech business because it was solving a problem it had experienced.
“Salta invested in Fresho, in part, because we had a business in food warehousing and distribution, so have firsthand experience of the problem they are solving,” he said. “Improving technology in fresh food is an enormous opportunity, and Fresho is well on the path to doing that in our view.”