Sunday 6 January 2019 6:54 pm

Gousto cooks up £18m funding and signs up 'The Body Coach' Joe Wicks

Meal kit company Gousto has cooked up a further £18m worth of funding and welcomed fitness writer Joe Wicks on board.

New investors, including Wicks, Unilever Ventures, Hargreave Hale, MMC Ventures and Angel CoFund have backed the recipe box company, it said yesterday.

Gousto, which deliver 1.5m meals a month to customers, has now raised £75m since it was launched in 2012.

It used £28.5m of that investment into tech and AI in March this year, doubling its factory capacity and launching an AI recipe recommendation tool.

Chief executive and founder Timo Boldt said: “In March we said we would win even more of the one billion meals eaten in the UK every week, by accelerating our proposition and giving customers the meal times they actually want.

“Nine months later and the proof is in the pudding – we are making huge waves and delivering tremendous growth, by focusing on the areas the rest of the grocery market isn’t.”

Wicks, known as the Body Coach, will bring a new range of recipes, developed alongside Gousto available to customers from this month.

Smaller rival Mindful Chef, currently being run by former Marks & Spencer head of food Tim Lee, also announced it has raised £6m from specialist investor Piper in a further sign of the growing market for recipe box meals.

The Wandsworth-based firm, which provides gluten-free, dairy-free recipe boxes, was launched in 2015 by three childhood friends.

In the last year it has seen a 178 per cent rise in annual sales to £10m