🍲 Backing Jow
Hi, it’s Alexandre from Eurazeo (ex. Idinvest). I’m investing in seed & series A consumer and consumer enablers startups all over Europe. Overlooked is a weekly newsletter about venture capital and underrated consumer trends. Today, we’re announcing our series A investment into Jow which is a consumer app to make your grocery shopping in less than 5 minutes thanks to shoppable recipes.
What is Jow?
With Antoine, we're thrilled to announce that we're leading Jow's $20m series A to reinvent your weekly grocery shopping experience.
Grocery is one of the largest markets out there and can be disrupted in so many ways. Some companies are more verticalized and cash intensive, others more horizontally focused on logistics and wholesalers. Jow is all about one thing, reinventing the online grocery shopping experience, and they do it better than anyone. We are proud to back a team that is building a new category in grocery and has the ambition to become a world wide leader.
Shopping weekly groceries online is a nightmare. Scrolling through an infinite list of products feels like a copy-paste of a real-life supermarket experience. Jow helps you fill your grocery basket in 5 min by answering the two most important questions for you: What's for dinner this week? Which staple products am I missing? The result is a simple and elegant product experience that provides shoppable recipes tailored for you and your family and will push the staples you regularly buy when you need them.
Concretely, on the app, you choose your favorite retailer - Jow is partnering with all the biggest ones in France like Monoprix, Carrefour, Auchan, Chronodrive, Leclerc and Intermarché. You will pick the recipes that you want to cook during the week and Jow will convert them instantly into a cart with all the products needed. Jow will complement your shopping cart with a preselected list of staples based on your purchase history. To complete the order, you just have to pick the delivery method (home delivery/curb-side) and pay in one-click with ApplePay.
Jow was founded in 2018 by Jacques-Edouard Sabatier, Antoine Maillard and Franck Maurin who worked together previously at French television channel Canal+. Since inception, 20m meals have been prepared thanks to Jow.
Below you can look at Jow's customer journey when you open the app for the first time and when you make an order from your favorite retailer.
What do we Love about Jow?
Jow is an unique company with a global potential - two rare characteristics in European grocery startups.
Most European grocery startups are capped by design because they are importing a successful grocery model from other geographies (e.g. Gorillas inspired by GoPuff and Getir) and/or they have models that are partially or fully vertically integrated (e.g. Gorillas with its dark stores). On the contrary, Jow dared to create its own category with shoppable recipes. It's harder because you have to create all the playbooks from scratch but it's also a much more interesting journey because you have an unlimited upside as the model is asset light and as you have a real first mover advantage on the global scale.
Jow is creating and owning the grocery category of shoppable recipes. We fell in love with this category for several reasons:
Simple on paper, extremely hard to execute in reality. The best consumer innovations are always easy to understand but hard to implement perfectly. Many players (retailers, medias, etc.) have tried to make recipes shoppable but only Jow managed to make this concept a reality at scale.
Owning the grocery journey end to end from inspiration to cooking. Jow wants to become the go-to destination when it comes to grocery. You can browse inspiring recipes on Jow. When you decide to do your grocery shopping, you spend 5 minutes on Jow picking up your recipes and complementary staples before ordering from your favorite retailer. Once you have the products at home, you will come back to the Jow app everyday to follow the recipes and cook the meals that you have planned. This virtuous circle is extremely compelling because Jow is becoming a Pavlovian reflex when consumers think about their grocery shopping.
Combining media and commerce into a single experience. The founders' media background is a key to Jow's vision as they are constantly pushing new content on the platform. Jow has an internal team creating recipes for the app and for social media platforms. It is one of the reasons why Jow is the most beloved app of its category. The app has a 4,9 app store rating average with 18k notes.
A democratic value proposition. Most startups in the grocery space are targeting mostly urban and wealthy households. It's a mistake when you know that price is the key purchasing factor in grocery shopping. Jow is not applying any mark-up on retailers' prices and is progressively building an advertising engine to offer coupons when you order from certain brands.
We are entering in a pivotal phase in Jow’s journey with two main focuses:
Launching in the US market. Jow has opened an office in New York and will publicly launch its app in the coming weeks.
Doubling down on monetization. Jow is in a unique position between consumers, retailers and FMCG brands. Jow has a secret sauce to generate revenues mixing social, fintech, cooking and advertising.
If these two missions resonate with your background and aspirations, you should consider joining Jow’s amazing team. They are hiring accross several positions. You can check their career page here.
If you want to learn more about Jow, their expansion plan in the US or their secret sauce to generate revenues, you can reach us out at firstname.lastname@example.org or at email@example.com.
Thanks to Julia for the feedback! 🦒 Thanks for reading! See you next week for another issue! 👋
So, not Blue Apron then?