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Infant formula startup Bobbie raises $50 million

A smiling woman with long black hair holds an infant while reclining on a white sofa. Next to her on a tray table sits a package of infant formula and a baby bottle. A brown dog investigates..

Photo: Bobbie

Bobbie, a maker of organic European-style infant formula, announced earlier this week it raised a Series B of about $50 million, increasing the startup's total backing to $72 million.

  • Its CEO and co-founder Laura Modi spoke to me about the funding and what's next.

Why it matters: Infant formula is a difficult egg to crack because it is closely regulated by the Food & Drug Administration, requiring more investment up front.

  • "This is a product and business model that’s smart enough to be profitable quickly, but it requires deep investment," Modi tells me.
  • It took three years to bring the first product to market, she added.

Of note: Bobbie raised seed funding of $6.5 million previously and a $15 million Series A.

By the numbers: Revenue is expected to grow five times this year, which equates to about $90 million.

  • The valuation as a result of the raise is above $100 million: "It has more than tripled post money with this latest round," a spokesperson said.

Between the lines: Bobbie's inaugural product, made available about 14 months ago, generated $18 million in sales solely via a DTC model in its first year.

  • The company is growing 60% month over month, a pace that is not slowing, Modi says.
  • Contributing to the growth is not just the brand's organic appeal literally and figuratively, but also due to broader infant formula shortages and product recalls.
  • In that vein, proceeds from the Series B will be invested in Bobbie Labs. The aim is to incorporate the latest research and science into products launched over the next handful of years.

Details: In exchange for purchasing a subscription, parents are guaranteed monthly deliveries to their doorsteps.

  • "It’s not just what we’re growing to, but how we’re growing," Modi said, noting that 80% of new business is due to customers finding the brand, not due to Bobbie shelling out a lot of cash on customer acquisition.
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