Shef, the nation’s leading chef-to-consumer marketplace, announced today plans to expand nationwide, following the completion of a $73.5 million Series B funding round last year, bringing the company’s total funding to date to more than $100 million. The funding will help Shef connect talented local cooks anywhere in the United States with customers looking for healthy, high-quality food options prepared by members of their community. It is the largest investment ever made in a chef-to-consumer marketplace.
CRV led Shef’s previously closed Series B round, which also included participation from Andreessen Horowitz and Amex Ventures. The funding round included $7 million in venture debt.
Shef launched in the Bay Area in 2019 and now serves 70 million people across 11 states and Washington, D.C. Since its inception four years ago, the marketplace has attracted thousands of local, food safety certified “shefs,” with 85% of them being women and 80% being people of color. Many are immigrants or refugees from nearly 100 different countries. Cooks on Shef have earned tens of millions of dollars in net earnings to support their families.
The new funding will allow Shef to assist thousands more local cooks in turning their culinary skills into a small business for the first time, while also meeting the needs of busy consumers seeking healthy, high-quality meal options. By 2022, all 50 states will have legalized the sale of certain types of home-cooked food, with many states clarifying laws to embrace and regulate the practice. Beginning today, talented chefs from all over the country can apply to sell their homemade specialties on Shef. Shef will also invest in key product developments, such as new preference and customization features that will provide a truly personalized experience.
Shef is committed to giving back to non-profits and causes both locally and globally, in addition to supporting the rapidly growing community of shefs across the country. More than 10,000 meals have been donated to those in need by Shef and its customers. Shef also launched an initiative to assist Afghan refugees in the aftermath of the 2021 crisis, expediting applications for any Afghan refugee interested in cooking on Shef and allocating $3,500 per person to cover training, supplies, and marketing support.