Second acquisition extends European leadership
● Acquisition of Bergamotte secures top 5 online position in France
● Deal provides scale, a strong local brand and revenue synergies
● Bloom & Wild operates across 8 countries and is profitable
● Separately Bloom & Wild raises £30 million in further equity and enters a £20 million debt facility
Bloom & Wild, Europe’s leading online flower delivery company, announces that it has acquired the entire share capital of Bergamotte, a French based competitor, for an undisclosed sum. The acquisition more than quadruples the size of Bloom & Wild’s French business overnight and secures a top 5 leading position in the country’s online flower delivery market. Bergamotte has also recently expanded into Germany, further strengthening Bloom & Wild’s footprint and expertise in this important market. The deal consolidates Bloom & Wild’s position in the growing £22 billion European flower and house plant market, that is transitioning online.
Like Bloom & Wild, Bergamotte is a direct to consumer online flower and plant business that was founded by Romain Raffard and Loïc Reperant in December 2015. Fast growing and with a strong brand following in France, Bergamotte runs a team of some 80 out of Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin. In addition to one-off gifting and flower subscriptions, Bergamotte has a well-developed plant range, which includes large indoor and outdoor plants, and this year also began offering outdoor furniture. There are substantial synergies to be realised from Bergamotte’s insights, expertise and supplier relationships in the plant market. The deal will more than double Bloom & Wild’s plant revenue across Europe and the expertise gained will act as a springboard to accelerate growth in this important market segment, which makes up just under one third of the combined flower and plant market. From a marketing perspective, Bergamotte uses pop-up stores as an important feature of its brand building strategy, which will provide interesting fresh opportunities for the wider business.
Under the terms of the deal, the Group will invest behind the Bloom & Wild, Bergamotte and recently acquired bloomon brands as it accelerates its European growth strategy. Romain Raffard, CEO and Co-founder of Bergamotte will become the Managing Director of Bergamotte, reporting directly to Aron. Sitting behind the consumer-facing brands will be an updated, singular, integrated technology, data science, logistics and marketing platform that reflects the most advanced elements of all three businesses. This will provide the Group with the most sophisticated, scaled technology and data science capability in the industry, ensuring efficiency of operations, optimised marketing and an unrivalled customer experience.
“I’m really excited about this deal, which enhances the opportunities for career and personal development for the entire team, secures ongoing investment for the Bergamotte brand and through knowledge sharing across both businesses, will give us the most powerful technology, data and marketing platform in the industry. Culturally there is a strong fit and we share similar values around customer service, innovation and sustainability. I am fully invested in the enlarged business and look forward to working with Aron and the whole team as we continue to seize the opportunity in the growing European flower market”, commented Romain Raffard, CEO and co-founder of Bergamotte.
Following both the acquisition of Bergamotte, and bloomon in April 2021, Bloom & Wild has consolidated its position as the leading European online flower and delivery company, defined by the number of deliveries. The enlarged business is targeting revenues substantially north of £200 million in the current year and will be profitable from the outset, with a team of 413, across offices in London, Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin.
Separately, Bloom & Wild announces that it has raised an additional £30 million of new equity in an extension to its initial Series D raise earlier in 2021, with a Series D2 investment round from existing investors including General Catalyst, Index Ventures, Burda Principal Investments, d4 Ventures, Novel TMT Ventures, MMC Ventures, Novator and Pecten Capital. In tandem the Company has raised £20 million of debt finance in a two-bank club deal. Silicon Valley Bank UK Branch acted as Agent on the transaction, with Barclays and Silicon Valley Bank UK Branch both Mandated Lead Arrangers. Collectively, these funds alongside the £75 million equity funding raised in January 2021 and consistent internally generated cash have and will continue to be used to fund organic and inorganic growth initiatives.
Aron Gelbard, CEO and co-founder of Bloom & Wild said:
“We are rapidly extending our leadership of the European online flower and house plant market through the combination of strong organic growth and selective acquisitions. As markets continue their online transition, Bloom & Wild is best placed to capture this growth, given our expanding product range and the sophistication of our technology, data and marketing capabilities, in what is a growing £22 billion European market opportunity.
Romain and Loïc and their entire team have done an outstanding job establishing Bergamotte as a leading brand in the French market and as an innovator in the flower and plant category and I am delighted to welcome them all to the Bloom & Wild family. Our enlarged business has a wealth of international talent, deep seated ambition and unrivalled scale, underpinned by strong investor backing. We will continue to build a profitable business that puts delivering for our customers, contributing to our communities and reducing our impact on the planet at its heart.”
About Bloom & Wild
Having grown-up in an entrepreneurial family, a Harvard MBA and roles as a strategy consultant were always going to be a prelude to Aron running his own business. With strong attention to detail and a drive to use this to create great customer experiences, Aron was keen to transform an industry that was about more than just profit and had the power to uplift and support meaningful relationships. Frustrated with the poor customer experience of sending and receiving flowers both on and offline, Aron saw the opportunity to adapt the letterbox delivery concept, so successfully deployed by healthy snack company graze, to transform the flower industry. He quit his job at the age of 30 to realise his dream, launching Bloom & Wild in 2013 with co-founder Ben Stanway.
An obsession with building brilliant customer experiences and innovation have run through the business from the beginning. Aron spent three months measuring letterboxes to ensure that the product would deliver on its promise and built in a data science capability early on so that the business could identify emerging quality and delivery issues and correct them at speed, sometimes even before the customer noticed. With vase life fundamental to the customer experience, the team were quick to innovate the supply chain. Cutting out middlemen and building strong relationships with growers and suppliers, Bloom & Wild have slashed the time taken from the picking of flowers to customer delivery by some 50% to as little as 3-4 days, significantly enhancing vase life. Bloom & Wild has created an exceptional customer experience through brilliant UX design, outstanding customer service and thoughtful branding, which is evident in a UK Customer Net Promoter Score of 85, ahead of industry peers and global tech giants such as Amazon, Apple and Netflix.
Following the acquisition of fellow flower scale-ups bloomon in April 2021 and Bergamotte in July 2021, Bloom & Wild has cemented its position as Europe’s leading online flower delivery company as defined by number of deliveries, operating across eight countries including Germany, France, Austria and the Netherlands. The combined business expects to report revenues this year substantially in excess of £200m and a second year of profitability. Historically, the business has grown by over 60% each and every year since inception.
Bloom & Wild is an environmentally responsible business. The business offsets all of its emissions created throughout the value chain covering all direct and upstream operations as defined by industry standards (scope 1, 2 and 3). All letterbox packaging is 100% recyclable and this will be extended to all packaging. Following an increase in their partnership with the green delivery company XeroE, over 40% of Greater London deliveries are now carbon free and this is being extended to other cities in the U.K.
An alum of Tech Nation’s Future Fifty and ranked the 2nd fastest growing company in the UK by Deloitte (2017 UK Fast 50), Bloom & Wild was also recognised in 2020 as one of The Sunday Times Top 100 Small Companies to Work For.
To date the Company has raised £126 million of equity over five institutional funding rounds, having completed a £30 million extension to its £75 million Series D raise in July 2021. Shareholders include General Catalyst, Index Ventures, Burda Principal Investments, MMC Ventures, Piper, Novator and Latitude Ventures.
Launched at the end of 2015 by Romain Raffard (CEO) and Loïc Reperant (CTO), Bergamotte has attracted almost one million customers since its inception with a broad product offering centred on nature, from seasonal flower bouquets to plants that calm and decorate the home, as well as dried flowers and garden furniture.
Thanks to a series of on point collaborations, an obsession with customer experience, a strong commitment to environmental and social initiatives and the use of advanced technology, the team of some 80 working from Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin has delivered sustained year on year growth, which has enabled the brand to establish itself in the French market as the go-to modern brand in this space.
Bergamotte, which has been profitable for the past year, has raised three funding rounds between 2016 and 2018 for undisclosed sums from 360 Capital, Xange et Raise Ventures as well as angel investors including Thibault Lougnon and Eric La Bonnardière.