Butternut Box is a new startup in the United Kingdom that has been making the news with its services that provide fresh home-cooked meals for canines. It is a versatile company that specializes in healthy and nutritious meals delivered to owners via subscription. The company has also attracted the attention of some significant venture capital investors who see the great potential for Butternut Box to become a successful giant in the dog food industry. If you've not yet heard about this unique and thriving business, here are 20 things you probably didn't know about Butternut Box.
1. Butternut Box is a young enterprise
According to Crunchbase, Butternut Box was founded in 2016. It's only been in operation for five years, but in that time the company has grown into a thriving business. Its headquarters are located in London, England, in the United Kingdom. The legal name of the business is Dogmates Ltd, but it is commonly known as Butternut Box.
2. Butternut Box has two co-founders
The founders of Butternut Box are David Nolan and Kevin Glynn. This is Nolan's first entrepreneurial endeavor. He is an Angel investor who invested an undisclosed amount into a company called Uncapped. Kevin Glynn is also an angel investor who invested in Uncapped. It is his first entrepreneurial endeavor as well. Previously he worked at Goldman Sachs in the High Yield and Distressed Debt division.
3. Butternut Box has a small core executive leadership team
The Core leadership team at Butternut Box is small. It is comprised of three employees. Although small in numbers, these executives run a tight and efficiently running ship. Kevin Glynn is co-founder, David Nolan is co-founder and Harriet Treadwell is the head of customer love.
4. Butternut Box has a strong management team
In addition to its core of executive leaders, Butternut Box has a strong support team of talented professionals helping to lead the company forward. Edward Carey is the finance director. Tom Hydes is the financial controller. Hannah Hesketh is the marketing manager. Jonny Shillito is the operations manager. Liz Denson is the social media and community manager. Megs Upchurch is the office manager. Selene Riontino is the insights manager. Adrian Pacala is the senior software engineer. Daisy Cooper is the learning and development specialist, and James Bovis is the front-end engineer.
5. Butternut Box has a small board of directors
There is currently only one advisor on the board of directors for Butternut Box. Nicholas Stocks is a board observer. He is a general partner for White Star Capital. He currently serves on two boards of directors in advisory roles. Mr. Stocks represents one of the investors that have helped to fund the venture capital rounds for Butternut Box.
6. Butternut Box uses a complex array of technologies
The website for Butternut Box requires the use of a complicated system of different technologies to provide users with a smooth and seamless experience. The Butternut Box website actively uses 63 technologies which are distributed across 25 technology products and services. Some of them include SPF, iPhone Mobile Compatible, Viewport Meta, Google Fonts, Google Analytics, HTML5, and many others.
7. The overhead for IT is in the thousands
Small website owners can usually get by with a few hundred dollars a year in special technology products. This is not the case for larger companies. They often spend thousands of dollars per year on these services, if not more. We learned that Butternut Box has a projected budget of $20.4K just for its IT expenses alone. Although it might sound expensive, it's one of the least expensive bills for technology we've seen in the business world. Some companies spend millions annually on their IT alone.
8. Butternut Box maintains a unique edge over the competition
Butternut Box is not the only company that provides fresh delivered pet foods, but it does so with a different approach. The company has secured 11 registered trademarks in the agricultural products and live animals categories. This is legal protection for its intellectual properties that prevent competitors from using the same technologies or approaches. These trademarks help Butternut Box to remain unique within its industry and to stand out among its rivals in the dog food business.
9. Butternut Box's web traffic is growing
There has been an increase in the interest in Butternut Box's products and services over the past 30 days. The analytics recorded for the website shows that there is an increase in the monthly visits growth of 12.25 percent. In the last 30 days, there were 193,723 unique visits to the website. This has resulted in Butternut Box achieving the ranking of number 170,307 out of the millions of websites that are registered on the world wide web. It's an impressive number by anyone's standards.
10. Butternut Box is the most popular in the United Kingdom
Most of the web traffic for Butternut Box comes from people living in the United Kingdom. Since the company only serves people who live in this region, that makes sense. Ninety-five percent of visitors are from the UK and there has been a monthly visits growth rate of 9.72 percent for the UK. Three percent of the web traffic has been from the United States. The monthly visit growth rate from the United States shows a 325.73 percent growth rate which indicates that there is a huge interest in the products offered by people who live in this country. One percent of the web traffic comes from Germany and less than one percent from people in Venezuela and India. This is important information that is valuable to key decision-makers in the company that are in charge of the growth and expansion of the operations. It shows them where there is high interest in the products and services offered by their business.
11. Butternut Box is a venture capital-backed business
Butternut Box has participated in six rounds of venture capital funding. It has raised a total of $113.4 million in funding so far. The most recent round of Venture Series Unknown funding was completed on August 10, 2021. The startup has attracted the attention of six lead investors and a total of seven investors.
12. Investor confidence is high in Butternut Box
The most recent investors to join the fundraising campaign for Butternut Box are L Catterton and Passion Capital. The latter is a lead investor. They are joined by White Star Capital, Five Seasons Ventures, Literacy Capital, and Kreos Capital. These investors have put well over $100 million into the startup which shows that they have a high level of confidence in the company's ability to become profitable and to give them a good return on the dollars invested in the future of the company. Butternut Box is in a strong financial position to continue to improve its products and services and to grow and expand throughout the UK and other parts of Europe.
13. Butternut Box delivers catered dog food
According to Techcrunch, Butternut Box specializes in the delivery of fresh dog food. Their platform is driven by technology in a style that they call HelloFresh. It is a catering service that provides its clients with human-grade foods prepared for dogs with a homestyle cooking method. The foods for each client are personalized to deliver the type of foods and diet that are desired by the subscriber. This is a type of service that is hard to find.
14. Butternut Box has become a trusted brand
Although people in the rest of the world have probably not yet heard about Butternut Box, that's not the case for those living in the United Kingdom. Dog owners throughout London have become accustomed to having the service around for the past five years and it has grown on them. Butternut Box has become one of the most trusted brand choices for pet owners in the UK. They've amassed a strong and loyal customer base.
15. Butternut Box is continuing to evolve
To maintain its competitive edge over other dog food providers, Butternut Box is continually evolving and improving its products and services. The company has systematically raised the bar for the expanding pet food market with its innovative digital platform that makes it easy for customers to place their orders and customize their products. The platform relies on a proprietary algorithm technology for identifying the number of calories that each dog in its clientele needs for good health. Considerations that go into the calculations include the body condition of the dog, activity levels, breed, age, and weight. The system then calculates the ideal portion sizes needed daily for the canine and this is how the portions are customized for each pet.
16. Butternut Box may help extend the lives of dogs
The co-owners of Butternut Box are in this business to provide natural dog food that is healthy and nutritious. They learned through research that dogs that are fed a diet of natural foods tend to live longer and healthier lives. Eating a healthier diet can help to cut down on the number of vet visits required and save pet owners thousands throughout their pets' lives. In Britain, it is estimated that more than £200 million is spent annually on vet bills due to feeding their pets unhealthy foods or overfeeding them.
17. Butternut Box is growing its workforce
According to LinkedIn, Butternut Box has a workforce of 189 staff members. Although it's not making any huge recruitment campaigns the company is adding to its current workforce. We noticed that there are currently seven-position openings with the company. One is for a job in Doncaster, and the rest are to beef up its operations at the headquarters in London. For now, it appears that Butternut Box is focusing on building its infrastructure in the United Kingdom. We see no evidence of expansion outside of its current service area. This is a strategy that includes slow and steady growth with a conservative approach.
18. Butternut Box is a privately held company
The owners of Butternut Box have opted to maintain its status as a privately-owned enterprise. They've not yet made the move to file for an IPO to take the company to the public arena. For this reason, you won't be able to find it listed on the public stock exchanges for sale or trade. In our research we saw no indications of plans to go public, so for now, it's a company that will continue to rely on funding from its private investors.
19. Butternut Box has contemporaries in the United States
According to Pet Food Reviewer, Butternut Box is a unique operation, but it's not doing anything new. Other companies provide similar products and services in the United States. The brands that have seen a great deal of growth from the US include Nom Nom, Ollie, and The Farmer's Dog. These are brands that currently offer fresh and healthy dog foods to thousands of canines throughout the United States.
20. You can't find Butternut Box from any third-party
Butternut Box has not allowed authorization to sell its products by any third-party providers. The firm maintains strict control over the foods and the Butternut Box platform without exception. It's not a typical dog food brand and you won't be able to buy their recipes from any other retailer or pet food store. There is only one place to obtain the products and services, and that is from the official Butternut Box website. This is just one of the ways that the owners ensure that each meal served to their clients is guaranteed to be fresh and healthy. They maintain control over all aspects of sourcing ingredients, meal preparation, calculation of the ideal portions, and the delivery of the products directly to the consumer.
Written by Allen Lee
Read more posts by Allen Lee