Hero Bread has secured a new round of financing as the US-based better-for you bakery start-up seeks to expand its retail distribution.

The Series B capital raise from a consortium of investors takes Hero Bread’s funding to $47.5m since the business was set up in 2021 by CEO Cole Glass, according to a statement from the supplier of low-carbohydrate and zero-sugar bread, croissants, tortillas and buns.

Glass said in an interview with Bloomberg that the Series B round amounted to $15m. Contributing investors included Chicago-based venture-capital lender Cleveland Avenue and peer DNS Capital, along with Union Grove Venture Partners, Composite Ventures and GreatPoint Ventures, according to the statement.

The 444 Capital fund, owned by social media celebrities the D’Amelio Family, also took part in the Series B round. Previous investors also include American football player Tom Brady, basketball player Kevin Durant and American rapper Lil Baby.

From a direct-to-consumer model, San Francisco-based Hero Bread expanded sales to independent retailers late last year and has also grown its presence online with Amazon. The company is about to launch its products nationally in Sprouts Farmers Market and with Albertsons stores in Texas and Louisiana.

“This new funding will be essential to expanding our reach and fuelling product innovation so we can further our mission of creating game-changing bread and baked goods,” Glass said.

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“Our early performance in the direct-to-consumer and grocery retail channels signalled to investors the incredible demand and quality of our products, so our priority going forward this year is accelerating availability to meet consumer demand both online and in retail.”

Select Hero Bread products will be available in 2,300 grocery stores across 32 states by the end of May, with other stockists including Tom Thumb, Randall’s, Heinen’s and Buehler’s Fresh Foods, the company said.

Glass founded the business in search of allergen-free alternatives to flour-based bakery products. He claims Hero Bread offers fewer calories than traditional bakery products, along with more protein and fibre.