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An award-winning vegan pizza chain has announced global expansion plans after securing £2.4 million in funding.

Purezza has outlets in Brighton, Hove, Bristol and London.

It is known for winning top honors at the prestigious World Pizza Championships held in Parma, Italy last year. It is the first vegan pizzeria to do so.

Vegan pizzeria

Purezza raised the funding from multiple investors, including MVK Group and Veg Capital. Purezza has investors from the Middle East, U.S.A, Europe, and Asia.

It plans to use the cash injection to open branches abroad, as well as develop a retail line of mozzarella (it already uses its own cheese in-house).

Purezza calls its own-brand cheese Mozzarella 2.0. It is free-from palm oil and contains ingredients including Italian brown rice. The company says its cheese is tastier than the original, as well as being lower in calories and fat. 

‘Holy grail’

Matthew Glover, vegan entrepreneur and Veganuary co-founder, is the managing director of Veg Capital, which aims to ‘drive up the supply of vegan foods while driving down demand for animal products’. 

Speaking about the investment, he said: “Vegan cheese is the holy grail for the plant-based movement, and the team at Purezza have developed the most realistic alternative to dairy-based mozzarella we have tried. 

“Our investment will help the Purezza team accelerate their move into the retail sector.”

‘Pioneers’

Manish Karani is CEO of MVK Group. He added: “Purezza has proven to be one of the pioneers in the vegan food industry.

“We are proud to be working with them in becoming one of the leading restaurant and retail brands across the world.”

Vegan pizza

Purezza has expanded significantly over 2020 – despite the pandemic. 

In a statement sent to PBN earlier this year about its expansion plans, Tim Barclay, co-founder and co-owner of Purezza said: “2020 was always set to be a big year for Purezza, and whilst the Coronavirus crisis was an unforeseen challenge, it won’t affect our plans.

Maria Chiorando

Maria Chiorando

Maria is the editor of Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle.