BOXT, a winery startup based in Austin, has raised $9.35 million in equity and debt funding to expand its share in the American fine wine market.
The funding round was led by Next Coast Venture with participation from WX Brands, Silicon Valley Bank, and several angel investors. Mike Smerklo, Co-founder and Managing Director of Next Coast Ventures, referred to the firm’s participation in the round by stating:
“Sarah was our Entrepreneur in Residence at Next Coast Ventures. When she first brought the idea to me, my immediate reaction was, ‘No more new ideas. This is the one.’ Since that time it has been amazing to watch the team at BOXT take this vision and turn it into a rapidly growing business that provides an amazing customer experience each and every month”.
Founded in 2071 by Sarah Puil, an entrepreneur with more than 18 years of experience in leadership positions, BOXT is aiming to change how wine is distributed and consumed while making it more accessible. The startup pays special attention to the environmental impact of its products by planting a tree for every BOXT it produces and using recyclable materials. Sarah Puil said about the startup’s mission:
“Our goal is to be everyone’s go-to glass of house wine. We’re excited to use this investment to expand our marketing to grow membership and brand awareness, fund technology development for reducing our carbon footprint and continue to research the best ways to provide a sustainable, luxury wine experience for our members.”
Not only does BOXT uses eco-friendly 100% wood compostable boxes to pack their wine but has also taken a novel approach by providing consumers with wines crafted by taste instead of the varietal. This makes it easier for consumers to choose and taste a new wine by removing the need for second-guessing. With eight wine tastes available at this time, wine enthusiasts can opt to subscribe to a delivery service via a monthly subscription or ordering a la carte.
According to the Wine Institute, the United States saw a total wine consumption of 1 billion gallons in 2020, a first for the world’s biggest economy. By changing how people access and buy wine, BOXT is looking to become a major player in the industry by making it easier for people to enjoy the entirety of the wine tasting experience.