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Nutrition startup ZOE raises £2m from Steven Bartlett’s fund

ZOE Bartlett
Image credit: Oleksandra Naumenko via Shutterstock

London-based nutrition startup ZOE has secured £2m from the Flight Fund, founded by Dragon’s Den star Steven Bartlett.

Launched in 2017, ZOE was co-created by a data science expert to create data-driven personalised nutrition programmes that aim to improve the health and well-being of users.

ZOE offers in-depth tests that are taken at home and uses the results to generate custom health plans. It is based on the concept that nutrition is not the same for everyone, so offering blanket advice can only get people so far.

“Since my co-founder, Professor Tim Spector, was on The Diary of a CEO talking Steven through key ZOE principles, such as no calorie counting and the impact of gut health on wellbeing, we’ve had huge interest in ZOE and our personalised nutrition programme,” said ZOE president and co-founder.

“From working with Steven and having him use the ZOE programme first-hand, we know he aligns with our mission to double-down on health science to help more people get control of their health and improve the health of millions.”

The funding for ZOE came courtesy of the Flight Fund, launched this year by Bartlett. The £81m fund targets startups in the space, biotech, blockchain, and health tech sectors.

“Once in a while, I come across a company that truly has the potential to move the world forward in a profound way,” said Bartlett.

“[ZOE is] a company that represents the future – health science, driven by big data, that enables us to extend not just our lifespan, but more importantly our health span.”

Bartlett’s first success, the Manchester-born digital marketing company Social Chain, was recently sold to a rival firm for £7.7m. The price tag came as a surprise to those that followed the journey of Bartlett and Social Chain, as the acquisition cost was a fraction of the almost £1bn in revenue expectations posted by Social Chain last year.

The price mismatch stemmed from confusion from the similar names of the Bartlett-founded Social Chain and its German parent company Social Chain AG. In 2019, Bartlett’s Social Chain went public through a reverse merger with German online retailer Lumaland, creating the much larger Social Chain AG.