Hello Nature to Improve Organic Food Services with New Investment
Hello Nature (Byung Yul Park, CEO), an online grocery retail startup, announced $1.4 million investment attraction from Softbank Ventures and Mirae Asset Venture Investment on September 16th.
Eun Woo Lee, the director at Softbank commented that Softbank foresees Hello Nature as the leader of Korean online organic food retailers. He added that Hello Nature satisfies the needs of working moms in their 20’s or 30’s who are looking for healthy and quality food to feed their families.
Organic foods are popular among Koreans. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, the organic food market is expected to reach near four billion dollars by 2014.
Byung Yul Park, the CEO of Hello Nature said, “consumers are increasingly looking for healthier food options, but often find it challenging to shop quality products at a good price and time of their choice.” He also commented that the recent investment attraction would allow Hello Nature to improve its service and develop credibility of the company.
Unlike other online grocery retailers in Korea, Hello Nature offers compact package delivery services called “nature-friendly grocery shopping.” The service sorts, packs, and delivers portions of fresh groceries that better serve individuals and smaller households. In the beginning, the service started with 100 package variations, and has now further diversified its product line to more than 1,000 variations.
Another unique feature is that the names of farmers who produce the groceries are made available to customers. These nametags replace farm identification codes, perhaps signifying the startup’s dedication to quality and interpersonal trust. To further individualize its farm-to-door grocery delivery process, Hello Nature does not keep a backlog of surplus inventory. Food crops are harvested and packaged at partnering farms only when there is a received order.
Hello Nature recently revamped its website and mobile app, upgrading its UI and customer loyalty program. It also introduced food recipes designed for each package. Hello Nature also offers free shipping for purchase of $40 and above, and a 50% discount to new customers.