Beau’s has secured £400,000 investment as it looks to build a vegan gelato brand that will raise the benchmark for the ice-cream industry and create a new facility in the North East.

After an initial round of investment in 2019 that allowed them to scale up their capabilities, Beau’s has subsequently secured additional funding from a group of investors including the TRICAP Group and venture capital firms Dismatrix and Northstar Ventures Limited – with funding from the North East Innovation Fund, supported by the European Regional Development Fund.

Part of the investment will be used to create a fully vegan, state-of-the-art ice cream manufacturing facility in Peterlee, which the business will move into in early 2021. This will greatly increase Beau’s production capabilities, allowing them to seek a wider range of market opportunities going forward, including white label manufacturing.

The investment has also enabled Beau’s to launch the UK’s first vegan ice cream subscription service – Beau’s Pint Club – which sends subscribers a dessert box of gelateria-quality vegan gelato, along with additional toppings cones and other extra items, direct to customers’ doors each month.

While ice-cream pint clubs are a relatively unknown concept here in the UK, they are a tried-and-tested staple in the USA. With the rapid rise of online shopping and increase in consumers opting for subscription services as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Beau’s team is confident that this model will appeal to UK customers. With veganism on the rise –over 600,000 people in the UK consider themselves to be vegan and around 125,000 signed up to try a vegan diet during this year’s Veganuary campaign – Beau’s is also tapping into a rapidly expanding market.

“Beau’s plans are far-reaching and innovative and I’m delighted to lead such a talented team to grow the business and bring quality vegan products to the mainstream market,” notes Joseph Eyre, CEO and founder of Beau’s. “We believe that we have a product that can appeal to vegans and non-vegans alike, making it a perfect option for families with mixed dietary preferences to explore. Beau’s Pint Club is just the first step in bringing quality authentic vegan gelato to a much wider audience.”

Already the recipient of multiple Great Taste Awards, Beau’s gelato contains only natural, whole-food ingredients (such as cashews and fresh lemon juice) with no artificial flavours, and contains up to 40 per cent of the core flavour ingredient (as opposed to the industry standard of roughly 10 per cent).

“We believe that the ice cream typically available to UK consumers could be a whole lot better,” asserts Amber Fox-Eyre, CCO and founder of Beau’s. “We’re looking to set a new benchmark, not just in terms of quality but also in terms of sustainable practices.” As part of Beau’s commitment to sustainability, the team has adopted an innovative ‘doorstep-safe’ fully-recyclable packaging solution for their Pint Club deliveries.

“We were clear about the investors we were looking to partner with ahead of this funding round and are delighted that they have bought into our vision and come on board with us,” adds Joseph. “Each investor brings a unique set of insights, specialisms and industry experience that we can rely on – and we’re looking forward to taking some significant steps together in 2021.”

“As well as offering vegans and those with lactose intolerance a nutritionally balanced gelato of uncompromising quality, Beau’s products will appeal to the ‘traditional’ ice cream market simply because they taste very good,” comments Moray Martin, TRICAP CEO and Chair of Beau’s. “This broad appeal, alongside the company’s sustainability credentials, were recognised by investors as key success factors aimed at overcoming some of the challenges faced by retailers and across the catering sector. We look forward to supporting Beau’s growth and development as it begins its manufacturing ramp up and brand building phase.”