Shipping boxes of pre-measured food ingredients to home chefs is a big business. And a very new one — companies like Blue Apron didn’t even exist until a few years ago.
But lo and behold the New York-based startup is in talks to raise $100 million in capital, on a valuation of $2 billion, says a Wall Street Journal report quoting people close to the matter.
Blue Apron isn’t new to this game. It raised $50 million from investors in April 2014 at a $500 million valuation. Before starting the company, cofounder and CEO Matt Salzberg worked at Bessemer Venture Partners.
Some of the other meal-kit startups that have popped up in the last few years include Plated, HelloFresh, and Marley Spoon.
Blue Apron’s business is growing quickly. The company shipped a million meal kits last November, and that number has now doubled to $2 million. That amounts to about $20 million in monthly sales at a cost of about $10 a meal, the WSJ speculates.
The most popular Blue Apron item is a refrigerated box containing the ingredients for three meals that feed two people. The ingredients are often exotic and hard to find. For this customers pay about $60 per week.
The company now employs 1,400 people across the country. It has warehouses in Jersey City, N.J., Richmond, Va., and Dallas.