[NEW YORK] Freshly Inc, a startup that delivers ready-made meals, is planning to go public as soon as 2021, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
The company, which counts packaged-food giant Nestle SA among its backers, has interviewed potential advisers to help with a listing and is targeting a valuation of more than US$1 billion, said one of the people, all of whom asked not to be identified because the information is private.
It may also explore other options, including a sale or going public by merging with a special purpose acquisition company, one of the people said. A representative for Freshly didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.
Freshly, which offers weekly subscription plans of four to 12 meals priced from US$8.49 to US$11.49 each, sells more than one million dishes per week, one of the people said. Nestle was the lead investor in Freshly's US$77 million funding round in 2017, according to a statement at the time.
Shares of meal-kit delivery company Blue Apron Holdings, which delivers ingredients instead of cooked meals, have more than doubled since the pandemic caused many states to impose lockdowns and close restaurants, starting in March. The company, whose stock has still lost 96 per cent of its value since its 2017 initial public offering, is also seeking a sale or additional capital.
Berlin-based competitor HelloFresh jumped 87 per cent during the same period.
Insight Partners and Highland Capital Partners are also investors in Freshly, their websites show.