In Holland, we know the Rabobank as the sponsor of the Dutch cycling team. Apparently, they’re also providing financial backing to start-ups. Just ask Jelmer de Jong, Product Manager of eFresh.com – a B2B trading portal for the perishable industry. He emailed me that eFresh closed a 4.250.000 euro funding round with participation from one of Holland’s largest banks, the Rabobank.
eFresh offers a live direct trading platform for buyers and sellers in the fresh industry (meat, coffee, fruit, vegetables, dairy, etc) and cuts out the middleman. Their 2.0 catch phrase? ‘eBay for the fresh produce industry’. It’s competing with Alibaba and Global Sources, but has a strong focus on perishable products and international. Plus, they’re not only big in Asia.
Because of the direct trading, less fresh products get spoiled. Rabobank applauds this environmental-friendly approach of eFresh and pumps in some money. It’s probably a good investment, plus great marketing. That learns us one thing: the credit crunch is a rather influential trend, but don’t rule out the green lifestyle selling point yet.
eFresh.com and her holding company GET Holding NV will use the money to improve the usability of the portal (the UI really needs a makeover). They will also continue their buying spree. In the past years GET Holding NV bought over 15 companies and small portals.