Pet food business raises nearly £1 million for growth

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Bella and Duke founders Mark Scott (left) and Tony Ottley, with pets Alfie and Gus
Bella and Duke founders Mark Scott (left) and Tony Ottley, with pets Alfie and Gus

A fast-growing raw pet food business has raised nearly £1 million investment from high net worth individuals putting in between £59k and £200k between two tranches.

Bella and Duke previously secured £300,000 seed investment in May, after winning a £50,000 cash injection from the 2017 Scottish EDGE competition encouraging entrepreneurial talent and businesses with high growth potential.

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“The second round of investment has proved very successful, with current and new backers buying into our vision to enhance the health of pets across the country,” said director and co-founder Tony Ottley (53).

“The £920,000 generated is a huge vote of confidence in our mission to get pets off processed foods and raise awareness of the benefits of a varied and nutritious raw food diet sourced in the UK.

 “We have already built-up a 4000-strong ‘pack’ of customers who are signed-up on monthly subscriptions, helping to spread the gospel and provide support for one another.

“There has been interest from retailers but we want to retain direct contact with our customer base.

“The latest backing will also help expand our product range and develop our website and apps.”

Bella and Duke, founded in Perthshire by Mr Ottley, Mark Scott and Michael Scully, has set-up a 10,000 square foot UK distribution centre for their bespoke pet food packages in Perth.

“Demand for our products is spiralling and we now have 17 members of staff, plus advice and guidance from a vet and a nutritionist who were also among our original investors,” said Mr Scott (44).

The directors began to explore the benefits of raw food diets for pets rather than processed food after losing much-loved dogs to cancer.

“It was heart-breaking because, like so many pet owners, we regarded golden retriever Barney and collie Morph as part of the family,” said Mark.

“We try to look after our own health and began to question what we were feeding our dogs.”

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