Fast-growing Modern Milkman, a pioneer in sustainable grocery delivery, has acquired its US namesake Modern Milkman.

The acquisition originally came around by chance when the two founders discovered one another during a domain search.

Earlier this week Modern Milkman was the UK’s highest-placed company when it was placed eighth in the Financial Times FT 1000, which ranks Europe’s fast-growing companies.

Since its inception, the startup’s modern take on a traditional milk round has resulted in growing revenue three-fold every year since 2019, while establishing itself as a leader in reducing food and packaging waste.

Modern Milkman UK has raised around £50m in investment has been backed by leading investors from Insight Partners, Praetura Ventures, ETF Partners and Avery Dennison.

Modern Milkman gains B Corp status

Like Modern Milkman in the UK, the US Modern Milkman delivers milk and soft drinks in reusable glass bottles, as well as eggs, baked goods and more, connecting thousands of households to local farmers and suppliers in their community.

The acquisition will retain the US operation’s current staff and continue to invest in growth, which currently equates to 6 per cent week-on-week as it aims to capture the East Coast.

The US team plans to expand its presence in Connecticut and Massachusetts, and establish operations in New York and Rhode Island late this year.

“This US acquisition is a testament to our commitment to revolutionise the grocery industry and wipe out waste,” said Simon Mellin, CEO and founder of Modern Milkman.

“Together with our new US team, we share the same name, purpose, and vision, and are now ready to make a substantial impact on both sides of the Atlantic.”

Seth Bahler, who founded the US Modern Milkman in 2018, said: “Joining forces with our UK namesake is a natural progression for us.

“Simon and I first connected with one another due to sharing the same name, but our complimentary skillsets and shared commitment to fresh produce, convenience, local communities and sustainability are what make this partnership so powerful.”

Bahler created the US Modern Milkman after 10 years as CEO of Oakridge Dairy Farm, tapping into the demand for home delivery and high-quality, locally grown food.

Just like Mellin’s Modern Milkman venture in the UK, the fifth-generation farmer grew the milk round from a small truck and a few customers into a network consisting of thousands of households.

EnviroTech 50 star Modern Milkman backed by Praetura Ventures

The US milkround currently serves Massachusetts and Connecticut, but Mellin and Bahler have ambitious plans to tap into the vast scale opportunities this acquisition represents.

“Leveraging the robust platform we’ve built in the UK, we’re already making headway in expanding our eco-friendly milk round across the US, with plans to extend into New York very soon,” Mellin added.

Sixty million tonnes of food and 80 million tonnes of packaging are wasted in the US each year. But interest in eco-friendly habits continues to grow, with 78 per cent of US consumers saying adopting a sustainable lifestyle is important to them.

“Convenience stores have commoditised food and wrapped it in wasteful packaging, sacrificing our planet and connection with local farmers,” says Mellin. “But with shared goals and a united team, we are perfectly positioned to satisfy the growing appetite for sustainability and make a real difference.

“Our immediate growth trajectory is a clear indication of the potential within the US market. By combining our resources and expertise, Modern Milkman is set to lead the way in sustainable grocery delivery, making a positive impact on the environment and communities on both sides of the ocean.”

In 2018, Modern Milkman was set up in Colne, Lancashire, by four friends with a beat-up truck, inspired by Sir David Attenborough’s Blue Planet.

Modern Milkman is now headquartered in Manchester and is a Certified B Corp.