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October 24, 2022

Unilever backs Indonesia vitamins maker Youvit

The consumer-goods giant’s portfolio already includes full ownership of vitamins businesses in the US.

By Dean Best

Unilever has invested in Youvit, a vitamins supplier based in Indonesia.

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Youvit, set up in 2016, said it had raised US$6m in a Series B round of funding that included Unilever Ventures, the FMCG giant’s corporate-investment vehicle as one of the backers.

The company plans to use the funds to expand its range, hire staff and launch its full product range across Malaysia. It also wants to “ramp up” across south-east Asia after becoming Indonesia’s “number one gummy vitamin brand”. No data was provided to support the claim.

Youvit argues the vitamins market is “rusty and old-fashioned” and believes there is “a large market for quality products that specifically target millennials from the emerging middle classes in growth markets such as Indonesia”.

Wouter van der Kolk, co-founder and CEO at Youvit, added: “Customers deserve a better experience. We aim to improve the health and well-being of hundreds of millions of customers and as a result grow into the number one vitamin brand for urban millennials in south-east Asia.”

In recent years, Unilever has added to its food portfolio with acquisitions in the vitamins and supplements markets. Last year, the Knorr soup and Magnum ice-cream maker acquired US supplements business Onnit. The year before, Unilever snapped up US-based SmartyPants Vitamins. In 2019, the company purchased US-based vitamins-to-snack-bars firm Olly Nutrition.

Pawan Chaturvedi, a partner at Unilever Ventures, set out why the fund had invested in Youvit. “With its modern and innovative product formats and an omnichannel approach to distribution, Youvit is poised to disrupt the large vitamins and supplements market in south-east Asia,” he said. “Youvit also marks our first investment in the vibrant start-up ecosystem of south-east Asia, a market which offers us immense opportunities to partner with visionary founders.”

Private-equity firm DSG Consumer Partners, which was the investor in Youvit’s Series A round, also took part in the latest raise.

Just Food has contacted van der Kolk for further comment.

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Sustainable and recyclable packaging is more in demand than ever, yet the packaging industry is at a crossroads.

While the traditional practices and old ways of doing business are well-established and understood, avoiding the circular economy is not a viable plan for the long term.

However, this circular shift doesn’t have to be a radical overhaul overnight. A combination of small changes can make a big difference. And these changes can result in cost savings.

Siegwerk is an internationally recognised provider of sustainable coatings and inks for the packaging industry. The company has embraced the circular economy and is setting many standards in sustainability in packaging products while working with major brands.

To learn more about the work of Siegwerk in the circular economy, download this document.

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