(Bloomberg) -- Jinx, a dog-food startup backed by actor Chris Evans, raised $17 million as it pushes into more US retailers.
The funding round, set to be announced on Thursday, was led by the Merchant Club, which represents family offices in co-investments, and was joined by Align Ventures and AF Ventures. Existing investors include celebrities such as actor Will Smith, singer Halsey and comedian Trevor Noah. It brings Jinx’s total funding to over $50 million.
Evans’ involvement is greater than that of his celebrity peers after he signed a multiyear deal to promote the products in commercials alongside his canine friend Dodger. They’ll be featured in Jinx’s first large-scale television ad campaign in the fall.
Executives plan to spend the proceeds on advertising, retail displays and product development. Jinx started by selling dry kibble and has since moved into canned wet food pâtés, treats, dental chews and meal toppers such as freeze-dried salmon and chicken.
The company initially was purely direct-to-consumer but started selling through other retailers in early 2022, partnering with Walmart Inc. to enter thousands of stores. Sales are on track to break $45 million this year, the company said.
Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Terri Rockovich said the Walmart deal quickly boosted revenue by 800%. Jinx is now also sold at Target Corp. and pet retailers Chewy Inc., Petco Health & Wellness Co. and PetSmart.
“Online is still a very viable and important place to be playing,” Rockovich said in an interview. “But ultimately, our business is exploding through retail.”
Products will soon be available nationwide at Albertsons Cos.’ namesake supermarkets and the company’s Safeway stores. Jinx is expanding its footprint to about 5,500 total locations.
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