Belgium-based biscuit and snack maker Lotus Bakeries has acquired a minority stake in Iqbar, a better-for-you bar manufacturer based in the US.

The investment, of an undisclosed sum, came as part of a Series B funding round for Iqbar.

Biscoff, Trek and Bear brand manufacturer Lotus Bakeries acted as the lead investor. It made the investment in the Boston-based business through its venture fund FF2032.

Founded in 2017, Iqbar makes a line of plant-based nutrition bars for keto, paleo and vegan diets. Each gluten- and dairy-free bar contains 12 grams of protein and six “brain” nutrients meant to support cognitive performance, such as omega-3 oils, vitamin-E and choline. The company has also launched a line of zero-sugar hydration mixes.

Iqbar bars are sold online and in 8,000 stores across the US, including in branches of several national chains.

Jan Boone, the CEO of Lotus Bakeries, said: “[Iqbar CEO and founder] Will [Nitze] has created a bar brand that ticks all the boxes in a massive and growing category.

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“So far, Iqbar has already shown good traction with consumers and we have strong belief the brand will continue to perform strong. We believe in the team and we especially admire Will’s hyper-focus on business fundamentals, meticulous execution and solid capital efficiency.”

Nitze said: “The best partnerships are those where all participants think long term and prioritise doing business the right way. This is one of those special partnerships. We look forward to leveraging Lotus’ deep operational experience to accelerate Iqbar’s growth.”

Lotus Bakeries’ investment makes Iqbar the fifth company in its FF2032 portfolio, which already includes The Good Crisp Co., Oot, Peter’s Yard, Love Corn and Partake Foods, Inc.

Read Just Food’s guide: Big Food’s stake in the future – in-house venture-capital funds’ investments