Bogotá — Colombian startup Foodology, which operates virtual restaurants and ‘dark kitchens’, and which also has a presence in Mexico, Brazil and Peru, has raised $50 million in a round that included singer Maluma and Abu Dhabi-based venture capital fund Chimera Investments.
Previous investors such as Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), Wollef and Kayyak also participated as investors in the round.
Of the amount raised, $30 million is debt and $20 million equity, according to the Colombian startup.
At the end of last year, Foodology closed a $15-million Series A round led by Andreessen Horowitz and Base Partners.
Also participating in that round were Instacart CEO Nilam Ganenthiran; Kavak’s CEO Carlos García; Ualá's CEO Pierpaolo Barbieri; former Burger King board chairman Dick Boyce; and Merama’s CEO Sujay Tyle.
With this latest capital injection, Foodology expects to go from operating more than 80 dark kitchens to around 100 in the markets in which it operates.
With some $185.4 million raised in recent years in Colombia, foodtech is consolidating its position as one of the most dynamic and successful segments of the local startup ecosystem, with success stories such as Frubana and RobinFood.
With the pandemic, retailers strengthened their presence in digital channels due to consumer demand, making Colombia one of the largest e-commerce markets in Latin America.
The dynamics of technological solutions aimed at the food sector has also boosted the activity of startups in the logistics chain, which accounts for 67% of funds raised in the segment, including the contribution of unicorn Rappi, according to a report by KPMG.
There are estimated to be around 30 foodtech companies in Colombia, which account for 3.33% of the total number of companies in the local startup space, and which employ around 820 people in the country.
The 2021 Annual Foodtech Report by PitchBook states that 2021 “was an exceptional year for the financing” of startups in this sector, with venture capital investment in 2021 totaling $39.3 billion in 1,358 operations, doubling that of the previous year.