Ex-Bainies launch Cookoo, home made food delivery service

23 September 2016 Consultancy.uk

Former Bainies Rachel Swindenbank and Joanne Thompson earlier this year launched Cookoo, a London-based home-cooked meal delivery service. Home cooked meals, using quality ingredients and healthy recipes, tend to provide better overall nutrition at lower costs relative to fast-food – the new services connects people looking for a home cooked meal without the time to make it, to home cooked meals.

The food delivery startup market has drawn considerable funding in recent years, with the likes of Foodora, subsidiary of European unicorn Delivery Hero, blitzing the global market. Funding for startups in the segment hit £1.4 billion in Q4 2015, before falling – in line with wider trends in the market, to £416 million Q1 2016. The continued demand from consumers for quick fix meals, coupled with new businesses models being developed by startups, has resulted in a spurt of aspiring startup business owners seeking to make their fortune.

Fast food, for all its ease, tends to be relatively unhealthy: high in salts, saturated fat and low quality ingredients – and is, when compared to home cooking, often relatively expensive. Home cooked meals, whereby care is taken to select a broad selection of vegetables and quality ingredients, can provide a much higher level of nutrition at a fraction of the cost of fast food.

Ex-Bainies launch Cookoo home made food delivery service

In a bid to combine home cooking with the ease of having someone else do the leg work to make the meal, Cookoo was born. The London-based startup was launched at the start of the year by Rachel Swindenbank and Joanne Thompson, both Oxford University graduates and former consultants at Bain & Company. The startup connects local chefs with customers across London seeking home cooked lunches and dinner options, the food is then delivered to the customers’ door.

The startup has gotten off to a good start, recently receiving £250,000 in investments from venture capitalists, which will allow them to scale their operation to a staff of six, as well as expand the number of cooks and advertise the service.

About the new startup’s proposition to customers, the co-founders state, “We all want to eat well at dinnertime, but cooking a delicious meal after a long day at work is often not appealing. Traditional takeaway provides one alternative to eating out, but it doesn't tick the 'healthy' 'nutritious' 'home-cooked feeling' that so many of us crave on a daily basis. We decided to solve this problem.”

Swindenbank adds, “I feel like the huge increase in competition and the amount of people offering this service is a sign that there’s a real gap in the market. We feel that what we do is connect people who love cooking to people who love to eat in a very personalised way, so you know who your cook is. Our cooks are our heroes.”

Earlier this month Bain's Italian venture fund in Italy, R204 Partners, invested in the Italian startup Qurami.


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Red Consultancy helps Hendrick's to launch new gin

09 April 2019 Consultancy.uk

Red Consultancy has been signed up by Hendrick’s to help launch the famous distiller’s new limited edition gin. The consultancy collaborated with Hendrick’s to install floral phone boxes across UK cities, which presented entrants with free samples to the Midsummer Solstice drink.

Britain’s gin industry is now worth well over £1.2 billion – having more than doubled in size since 2011. With little sign of the industry’s boom going bust any time soon, demand for the trendy spirit has led to a boom in the number of businesses centring on either distilling or selling the spirit, with a growing number of ‘gin palaces’ doing both.

As UK distillery Hendrick’s Gin looks to prepare for another busy Summer, the company has launched its first ever limited-edition gin – Midsummer Solstice – with flower obliterations up and down the country. In order to help promote the new product to a wide audience, Hendrick’s enlisted the help of Red Consultancy, which began working to launch Midsummer Solstice following a competitive tender process earlier in 2019.Red Consultancy helps Hendrick's to launch new ginRed Consultancy’s efforts eventually led to a number of experiential, floral phone box portals being unveiled across London, Brighton, Manchester, Edinburgh and Liverpool to mark the launch of the campaign. Curious consumers who entered the floral phone boxes were gifted with a first taste of the new gin – either with a ‘Stem for a Serve’ redeemable at a local bar or in the tasting room of the London’s Soho Square launch.

Commenting on the campaign, James Taylor, Senior Brand Manager at Hendrick’s Gin commented, “The floral transformation of the once forgotten phone box are the perfect space to create a sensorial portal to our unusual brand world and transport curious minds back to simpler, less-connected times before social media and mobile technology transformed the way we communicate. A space where you can stop, literally smell the roses, and consider your true meaningful connections – the perfect way for us to celebrate the launch of Hendrick’s Midsummer Solstice with a disruptive activation.”

The gin itself is already available at Waitrose, and will become available throughout the summer. Its public relations launch will be further supported by paid social media and in-store activity throughout that time, before its limited run comes to an end.

Red Consultancy is a professional services firm which offers advisory services to clients looking for PR, digital and content expertise via its 140 staff in its Soho offices. The firm develops and manages campaigns, runs major press offices, and steers brands and businesses through engagement with media, consumers, customers, stakeholders and internal audiences both domestically and internationally.

Recently, the firm was involved in a campaign with smartphone maker Huawei, helping it promote its AI-driven completion of Schubert’s famous Unfinished Symphony.