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VBites Acquires Stake in Onist

looking up at a pale sandstone building

VBites, the vegan food brand managed by Heather Mills, has recently acquired a stake in fellow vegan brand Onist. It has not been revealed how much they paid to make the purchase, which follows on a spending spree from the former model.

Plant-based valley plans

When commenting on her investment in the healthy food startup, Mills said: “Though Onist’s products are excellent, it is their aligned drive, dedication and charity aspect that make it an ideal investment to help scale. We look forward to working with Mary and her team to show that good business can also be good for everyone on the planet.”

Mills has previously spoken about her bid to create a “plant-based valley” in the north east of England. This comes less than a month after she acquired a third factory site in Newcastle, in the building which once housed Procter & Gamble. The plant-based mogul appears to be on a bit of a spending spree, having made this purchase before even completing preparations to open her second factory.

Start-up collaborations

It seems as though this will not be the last of Mills’ announcements, as she intends to partner with a number of food start-ups to help power them to success by scaling up their businesses. This will be at least a part of the function of the third factory site, a launch date for which has not yet been announced.

“Heather was the investor and business partner we have been searching for. She has a fantastic vision, enormous infrastructure and she, like me, believes that the future of business is purpose-driven,” said Mary Lynch, the founder of Onist. She was previously the senior nutritionist at Jamie Oliver Ltd, which has clearly equipped her with plenty of the knowledge needed to make the right choices.

The brand has been growing well so far, despite the fact that it still operates out of Lynch’s own kitchen. She creates a range of high-fibre avocado snack pots which are now available in a number of large retailers. Selfridges and Whole Foods stock them in their stores throughout the UK, while they can also be purchased online through avocado.

The investment will no doubt look at giving the company a new kitchen space to work from, as well as perhaps expanding the team. If you are looking for a position with this or a similar business, be sure to take a look at our job board.

Strong ambitions

Lynch is certainly clear on the ambitions that she has for the brand, which are nothing less than astronomical.

“The avocado pots are fantastic and very popular, but there is still a huge amount of mysticism around what a healthy diet actually looks like,” she said. “Onist is here to be the no crap, no fads answer to healthy eating on the go.”

There is a huge market for vegan and vegetarian food, with many people beginning to recognise the health benefits of these diets as well as becoming more conscious of ethical concerns surrounding the treatment of animals used for food. When following our news articles, you will notice that the trend towards green options continues to grow with no sign of abating.

VBites is intriguing the industry at the moment with what seems to be a masterfully confident approach towards investment. Time will tell whether they have a strategy which will pay off, or more of a headlong dash into risk with the assumption that it will pay off eventually. There are certainly many interested parties watching to see if they will make a success of it.