Intelligent Foods has acquired Gobble creating a juggernaut with Sun Basket and Pruvit. Sun Basket’s acquisition by Pruvit under Intelligent Foods (previously PSB holdings) last year landed at $1.3 billion with Gobble’s acquisition in the same nine-figure ballpark. Although Gobble, Sun Basket and Pruvit will continue to exist as separate brands under the Intelligent Foods umbrella, Ooshma Garg will be named CEO of both companies with Gobble Executives Thomas Ricci, Chris Woodford, and Katerina Zaporozhetz joining her leadership team. Gobble has been growing profitably over the last four years making this acquisition the next logical step in scaling the brand. Both Gobble and Sun Basket rank highest when it comes to consumer spending on meal kits.
“Intelligent Foods was the right long term partner for Gobble because they are a fast-growing and diversified food powerhouse with the resources of a top food manufacturer combined with the spirit and hunger of a startup. The timing was perfect for Intelligent Foods to bring in Gobble because Gobble has been growing and profiting sustainably for over four years – a rare occurrence in this industry – and we are ready for the next level” shared Garg on why she felt it was the right time to partner with Intelligent foods. “ I’ve long believed that the best long-term company in this space would become a ‘house of brands,’ to provide high-quality external products for customers, with low-cost, efficient processes internally. We are creating that powerful house of brands with Intelligent Foods.”
Gobble will continue to offer its signature 15-minute freshly-prepped dinner kits to its current member base which are primarily busy working families across America. The Intelligent Foods acquisition enables Gobble to expand its reach to more families and ultimately deliver a better Gobble to everyone: less time in transit, access to more farmers and suppliers, expanded food product offerings available on Gobble, and shared backend costs with other food brands, which leads to more competitive pricing.
Intelligent foods is providing major upsides for brands strategically partnering with them. With Gobble and Sun Basket sharing core competencies, Intelligent Foods is able to accelerate product, cost and distribution advantages. “The Intelligent Foods companies are all high volume experts across a diverse product set including fresh meals, frozen meals, diet-focused meal plans, cook-from-scratch meal kits, and freshly-prepped meal kits. Products are nothing without distribution. The Intelligent Foods portfolio combines a coast to coast D2C supply chain and carrier network with a national army of tens of thousands of door-to-door sales people. There is so much opportunity for all of our companies in sharing these advantages that we have all built up so expertly over time,” explained Garg. “Finally, the cost efficiencies abound up and down the P&L. By optimizing vendor agreements and combining HR, Finance, and other shared services, we are making all of the portfolio companies more competitive and stronger for the long term. Within days of coming together, we’ve already discovered millions of dollars of savings and shared opportunities for our D2C brands under the Intelligent Foods umbrella.”
Garg sees a whole world of opportunity ahead for Gobble and Sun Basket as the macro environment over the last few years has changed the future of everything from work to food to shopping. The popularity of meal kits grew during the pandemic and have continued to grow at CAGR of 20.64%. “Behind the scenes, there is a bounty of ideation happening regarding the evolution of our food products, how we reach consumers, which lifestyle partnerships best benefit our customers, and how we deepen the relationship that we want to have with our members. Advertising and social media have changed drastically, so we are not just sitting idly by! We’re updating our processes and platforms to continue to have a meaningful and valuable relationship with our members and meet them where they are today – this is what changes a brand from a commodity to a vital, beloved, and lasting part of one’s life,” she said.
Besides scaling internal brands Garg finds an opportunity for emerging brands to partner with Intelligent Foods to tap into the juggernaut of resources. “The suite of core competencies and state-of-the-art facilities at Intelligent Foods now makes us the best partner for anyone creating and growing a D2C brand. Recently, brands have come to us to build out their entire backend – from recipes, to food production, to fulfillment, to customer service. We are now powering the food production and fulfillment of a number of D2C household names, which I wish I could disclose because I am so excited to be working with them!” she exclaimed.
Continued growth for both Gobble and Sun Basket is expected as streamlining resources will effectively bring consumer costs down while maintaining quality and efficiency of the meal kits. Partnerships like these will become more and more common during the recession as deep domain leaders in niche industries will want to leverage each other’s capabilities and core competencies if they share a common audience.