Finnish pet food brand acquires e-commerce platform

Alvar Pet, recently teamed with Juuri Partners, has created the largest Nordic online store for pet health with the merger with Kivuton.

2 Lisa Selfie December 2020 Headshot
Left to right, the founders of Kivuton, Heikki and below Kirsi, as well as the founders of Alvar Pet, Ilari, Henna and Hanna. In the middle, of course, Alvar.
Left to right, the founders of Kivuton, Heikki and below Kirsi, as well as the founders of Alvar Pet, Ilari, Henna and Hanna. In the middle, of course, Alvar.
Alvar Pet

Adapted from a press release.

Alvar Pet, a Finnish direct-to-consumer pet food brand, has acquired Verkkokauppa Kivuton (Kivuton), a Finnish online store focused on pet health. The acquisition follows the announcement of Juuri Partners joining Alvar Pet as a strategic partner.

Together, Alvar Pet and Kivuton will form the largest online store in the Nordics specialized in pet health, offering pet owners a wide range of veterinarian-developed products and diets individually tailored to pets’ needs, said the company.

“We are excited to combine expertise with Kivuton," said Ilari Haataja, co-founder and CEO of Alvar Pet. "Originally a veterinary clinic, Kivuton has a deep-rooted focus on pet health. By joining forces, we can offer unique nutritional expertise and an extensive range of specialty diets for pet owners who value the well-being of their pets."

Juuri Partners, a Finnish growth investor, has also joined as a strategic partner in the company. “We have closely followed the development of the pet market and see interesting growth opportunities, especially in the online segment," said Anita Ojala, a partner with Juuri Partners. "By combining a strong brand in pet wellbeing with an online store specialized in veterinary pet diets, we’re creating a unique player in the market that caters to pet health comprehensively. We are excited to be part of this fantastic growth story together with the entrepreneurs."

The partnership and investment enable Alvar to take the next step in its journey, said Haataja. "Our cooperation has been excellent from the beginning, and we share the vision of the company’s strategic development towards a leading company focused on sustainable pet well-being in Europe,” he said.

Alvar Pet sees significant growth opportunities in premium pet products

According to a Bloomberg Intelligence report, the global pet market is estimated to grow to US$500 billion by 2030. Demand for individually tailored pet diets has also grown significantly. According to Alvar Pet’s database that covers over 100,000 dogs, more than half of the dogs have special needs that owners seek to address through a diet.

“Pet owners are showing increased interest in supporting the health and special needs of their pets through nutrition," said Haataja. "Products of Alvar Pet are developed under our veterinarian’s guidance, and Kivuton offers the most extensive range of special diets in the country. Together, we aim to make individual and responsible premium pet foods more accessible to pet owners across the Nordics."

Over the past three years, Alvar Pet said it has become one of Europe’s fastest-growing startups in the pet industry. The joint annual sales of Alvar Pet and Kivuton have surpassed 10 million (US$10.8 million), exhibiting a 60% annual organic growth rate. Alvar Pet serves more than 40,000 pet households across the Nordic countries, such as Finland, Sweden and Denmark. 

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