SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. — Nounos Creamery has its sights set on becoming the next big landmark dairy brand. The traditional Mediterranean yogurt maker secured its first strategic investment, led by AccelFoods, earlier this month. Now, it’s bringing on new advisers and expanding its capacity in hopes of becoming a household name.
Founders Steven Ioannou and John Belesis launched the brand in 2013 with a mission to create authentic Mediterranean style food using the old-world techniques they grew up with in Greece. Since then, they’ve gained a loyal following in the United States with their F.D.A.-approved cheesecloth strained yogurt.
As Nounos Creamery gears up for its next phase of growth, Mr. Ioannou and Mr. Belesis are looking to their roster of investors to help bring scale and efficiency to their craft-style products. David Wilson, a founding investor of Siggi’s Dairy (the No. 1 selling yogurt at Whole Foods) joined Accel in the funding, along with Luciana Nunez, former general manager of premium yogurt at Danone.
“We are excited to be working with a team of investors, board members, new hires and partners that understand Nounos Creamery’s vision of what a Mediterranean premium yogurt should be,” Mr. Ioannou said. “With their support, Nounos Creamery will turn the dairy industry on its head and innovate to new levels while spreading our hand-crafted creations throughout the U.S.”
The company plans to use its new funds to acquire key hires, amplify marketing and increase R.&D. for new product development. It also is extending its coverage in retailers like Whole Foods Market, Wegmans and The Fresh Market.
While dairy yogurt sales have declined recently, growing interest in healthier foods is driving category innovation. More than half of all U.S. consumers now purchase yogurt as part of their regular grocery basket, and the category is expected to reach $9.8 billion by 2022.
All Nounos Creamery yogurts are high in protein, contain no G.M.O.s, gluten, rBST or hormones, and are packaged in recyclable glass jars. This farm-fresh, environmentally friendly image is resonating with shoppers, Ms. Nunez said.
“I am glad to invest in and be a part of Nounos Creamery’s journey as a brand that embodies the outstanding product experience, quality and sustainability that truly speak to the millennial consumer,” she said.