Zéro-Gâchis (Zero-Waste) has been supporting retailers in the fight against food waste since 2012. Relying on artificial intelligence and sound field knowledge, its unique solutions in the market guide in-store teams to detect products approaching their expiry date and decide the best way to recycle them: labelling with the right discount or donation to charitable organisations. Already adopted by 400 stores in France, Zéro-Gâchis is now picking up the pace and becomes Smartway. To support its growth, Paul-Adrien and Christophe Menez, co-founders, have just completed a €10m funding round led by Supernova Invest. Evolem Start, Holnest, IDIA Capital Investissement and UNEXO (Crédit Agricole Group) also took part in this first round of financing.
“We created Smartway to reduce food waste and to prove that this reduction could go hand in hand with profitability”, say Paul-Adrien and Christophe Menez. “Our solutions are the most efficient in the market today. To fuel our international expansion and maintain our technological leadership, we wanted to bring on board investors sensitive to technological and growth challenges. We are delighted with their decision to join us”.
THE 1ST ANTI-WASTE AI DEDICATED TO MASS RETAIL
On one side, tonnes of products thrown away in retail stores and an imbalance in the donation chain despite new legislation; on the other side, millions of precarious consumers. Intolerable waste that stores can now remedy, while also increasing their profitability.
Deeptech and socially responsibility company since 2012 and initiator of the ‘Zero Waste’ shelves, Smartway has developed the first Food Waste Management System (FWMS).This unique technological platform based on Artificial Intelligence makes it possible to optimise the entire chain of food losses in the retail industry by taking action at every stage, using:
- Smartdetection, ‘Short Date GPS’ that enables store’s employees to locate end-of-life products.
- Smartdecision, which decides the best repurposing route by making the most profitable choice for each product.
- Smartdiscount, which automatically prints a discounted label to sell each product.
- Smartdonation, which facilitates, dematerialises and safeguards the administrative procedures related to donating food.
Smartway solutions therefore make it possible to increase both the short-dated sales volume and the volume of donations, without one being done to the detriment of the other. The pay-off is an 80% reduction in food waste and a reported average increase of 51% in the store’s net profit.
A FUNDING ROUND TO CONFIRM ITS TECHNOLOGICAL LEADERSHIP AND ACCELERATE ITS INTERNATIONAL GROWTH
With this first funding round, Smartway intends to strengthen its leadership in mastering AI and to continue developing innovative and efficient tools dedicated to managing food scrap. Its solutions have already enabled €150m of savings for consumers and avoided 56,846 tonnes of food waste.
The Nantes-based deeptech startup has been profitable since 2014 and is now moving up a gear. Smartway targets to equip 4,000 sales outlets by 2025 in the 4 countries where it already operates – France, Spain, Portugal, Belgium. At the same time, its management sets off to conquer Eastern Europe and Italy, through partnerships in the coming months.
“We were impressed with the quality of the artificial intelligence developed by Smartway: a breakthrough technology that addresses the issue of food waste in a unique way. We are proud to support the startup and its talented team as it speeds up its sales growth and strengthens its innovative approach, two essential features to rapidly make Smartway a leader in the market” comments Romain Sautrau, Investment Manager at Supernova Invest.
Presse & Cie – Laetitia Munoz – Tel. +33 (0)6 20 49 90 39 – email@example.com
A food store throws away as much as it earns! While more and more consumers are in need, this waste is no longer tolerated: stores can now remedy this, while also increasing their profitability.
As a committed company since 2012, originator of ‘Zero Waste’ shelves, Smartway has created the first Food Waste Management System platform to optimise the end-of-life pathway for food products.
Relying on unique artificial intelligence, Smartway solutions guide in-store teams to detect products approaching their expiry date and decides the best way to recycle them: labelling with a suitable discount or simplified donation to charitable organisations.
“Working daily to reduce waste together”. smartway.ai
About Supernova Invest
Supernova Invest is a cutting-edge venture capital firm with a leading position in the French deeptech investment market. It manages and advises five capital funds for a total of €260 million AUM. Supernova Invest specializes in breakthrough technologies, developing start-ups in Industry, Health, Energy& Environment and Digital Technology sectors. The team has 20 years of technology investment experience and has provided more than 100 of the most innovative companies in their segments with support and guidance from creation until full maturity. Supernova Invest has a strong partnership with both the CEA (the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission) and Amundi (the European leader in asset management). www.supernovainvest.com
About Evolem Start
Evolem Start is the vehicle dedicated to venture capital from the Evolem family office (€850m under management). Evolem was created by an entrepreneur (Bruno Rousset, founder of April) to help entrepreneurs implement their vision. Evolem Start doesn’t focus on any particular sector or business model and invests in tickets between €300k and €3m on seed and series A funding. www.evolem.com
Holnest is the Family Office of the Aulas family. Holnest’s ambition is to continue and accelerate the entrepreneurial adventure started thirty years ago with the creation of Cegid and the recovery and subsequent development of Olympique Lyonnais. The aim is to employ an active strategy within its areas of knowledge (Digital, Deep tech, Entertainment, Services, etc.) and in all those areas where growth can be accelerated using digital technology. Holnest is chaired and directed by Alexandre Aulas and Patrick Bertrand. www.holnest.fr
About IDIA Capital Investissement
IDIA Capital Investissement consolidates the in-house national minority investment capital activities of the Crédit Agricole group, by supporting SMEs and mid-cap companies in all business sectors with recognised expertise in the food-processing, viticulture and energy transition sectors.
IDIA Capital Investissement manages total funds amounting to €1,84bn.
In 2019, IDIA Capital Investissement created CA Transitions, the first in-house bank investment fund dedicated to energy, agricultural and food-processing transitions. Endowed with €160m, its aim is to invest in food-processing businesses transitioning to more sustainable production methods, in energy transition businesses, and in younger companies offering innovative solutions to accelerate transition in the agricultural and food-processing sectors. The financial capacity of CA Transitions funds (investment tickets between €1m and €20m) enable it to support the development of businesses in these sectors sustainably. IDIA is a Portfolio Management Company regulated by the AMF (French Financial Markets Authority) under approval number GP-15000010. www.ca-idia.com
UNEXO, Crédit Agricole group investment fund, supports managers and entrepreneurs in Western France. The UNEXO finance offer is aimed at start-ups, SMEs and mid-cap companies: innovation, development, transmission, mezzanine and debt funds. Its role is to contribute to regional economic dynamism by maintaining decision-making centres and jobs. UNEXO has holdings in the capital of a hundred businesses as a minority shareholder. Key figures: €480m in equity capital, portfolio of 100 businesses, 20 employees, 300 businesses supported since 1993. www.unexo.fr