Detergent subscription service Smol raises funds to tackle large FMCG companies

Eco-friendly detergent subscription service Smol has raised funds to grow its range of products as it continues with its attack on the large consumer goods companies.

With £8 million in funding from investors including Balderton Capital the company intends to expand beyond its existing product range which consists of laundry capsules, dishwasher tablets and fabric conditioner that are delivered through customer letterboxes on subscription.

Smol has differentiated itself from the large brand owners by focusing on innovative packaging that has reduced chemicals and plastic usage. It has also formulated its products to remove animal fats to create a greener, eco-friendly range. For example, its new fabric conditioner bottles are made from 100% post-consumer recyclable plastic, while Smol also offers a returns scheme for refill and re-use.

This combination of green credentials and convenience has proven popular and Smol is now the fastest-growing laundry brand and leading detergent subscription service in the UK, powering 1.5 million washes each week. This has been boosted during Covid-19 with Smol experiencing a tripling of interest in its products.

Suranga Chandratillake, partner at Balderton Capital, said. “When people think of technology disruption, it is normal to think of digital products and internet tools. However, technology has the power to make life better for us in the most unexpected ways and we believe [Smol co-founders] Paula, Nick and their amazing team have tapped into just such an opportunity at Smol. Household cleaning is a great example of a product category where giant incumbents have ignored potential innovation. Smol has exploited that complacency, built a product people actually want and, as a result, got people excited about laundry and dishwashing all over again.”