Retail

Exclusive: Online pet-health startup Fuzzy makes its first acquisition

It hopes to get Dandy, a DTC pet supplement company, into retail stores next year.
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Fuzzy

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Welcome to the family. Fuzzy, an online pet health startup, announced its first acquisition today: Dandy, a DTC company selling supplements for dogs.

  • Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the move could help Fuzzy start to gain a foothold in stores. It plans to get Dandy—which sells dog treats that claim to alleviate issues like stress, anxiety, and allergies—into retailers next year.

Fine and dandy: “We see Dandy as a great opportunity to be able to get in the hands of pet parents through retail outlets and essentially being on the shelves as well as through the DTC offering,” Fuzzy CEO and co-founder Zubin Bhettay exclusively told Retail Brew.

  • Fuzzy, founded in 2016, has focused its efforts on providing telehealth and chat services for pet owners through a subscription model ($24.99 a month, or $99.99 a year); it also sells prescription pet meds, supplements, and other vet-curated items on its site.

The acquisition comes on the paws of Fuzzy closing a $44 million funding round in November—a crucial time because the asymmetry between pet owners and veterinary services grew dramatically due to the pandemic pet boom.

  • Fuzzy says its telehealth consultations have seen a 533% increase over the past year, while revenue on its e-comm platform has grown 447% YoY (though the company declined to disclose specific figures).
  • Pet retailers like Petco have also bolstered efforts in veterinary services.

Looking ahead…More traditional retailers might want to play fetch, Bhettay noted. He believes some missed the boat on the pet-care wave because of stiff competition from the likes of Chewy and Amazon.

“There are a number of retailers out there that believe that they should have played in kind of capturing some of the annual household spend and share of wallet from a consumer perspective,” Bhettay said. “We believe that we have an opportunity to be able to partner with them in a meaningful way and essentially get distribution into their customer base.”—KM

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