Trendy salad chain Sweetgreen just closed a whopping $35 million round of funding. According to a spokesperson, the restaurant — which started out in Washington, DC —plans to use the money to "continue its investment in the core areas of its business." Sweetgreen co-founder and co-CEO Jonathan Neman tells Eater: "As we continue to open new locations and grow into a national lifestyle brand, this funding will further enable us to innovate in technology and supply chain — to bridge the gap between health and convenience."
Sweetgreen is very focused on being able to "innovate in technology." The company is in the midst of expanding its mobile ordering app, which Sweetgreen says "currently processes a quarter of all transactions." Neman tells TechCrunch: "Food is the last frontier of mobile. There's been very little done to connect restaurants with their consumers and leverage tech to make that a better experience, and we want to lead that charge." The company plans to use a portion of the new round of funding to hire a team of developers so that all tech work can be done in house.
Co-founders Jonathan Neman, Nicolas Jammet and Nathaniel Ru opened the first Sweetgreen in Washington, DC eight years and ago, and since then, it has grown rapidly. The chain currently has 31 locations along the East Coast and in California, where the company most recently expanded. Plus, it can count restaurateur Danny Meyer (Union Square Hospitality Group) and chef Daniel Boulud (Daniel, NYC) among its investors. Last year, Sweetgreen managed to secure $18.5 million in funding, and TechCrunch writes that with the latest cash infusion, the chain has raised $95 million in venture funding to date.