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Yay Lunch closes on $12 million to improve food quality where children learn and play

  • Yay Lunch Raises $12 Million Series A to Change the Course of School Lunch USA - English

  • Company sees over 200% growth YOY since inception and receives funding from Valor Siren Ventures.

School lunch continues to be a massive problem, with quality and nutrition universally lacking. And now due to the pandemic, the system is plagued by supply chain issues. Yay Lunch is on a mission to change the lunch experience for the better - both in quality of food and experience for all involved - kids, parents, school staff. Delivering nutritious lunches kids love made by local restaurants to over 100 schools throughout DC, Baltimore, Central Virginia, Atlanta and Philadelphia, the team has just closed their Series A round of funding. The $12Mn round is led by Valor Siren Ventures (VSV), and includes Animo Ventures, Reach Capital, Alpaca Ventures, Pritzker Group and TMV.

Founded by Christina Liva Diiorio and Derek Mansfield, this brings the company's total financing to date to $15.5Mn since launching in 2018. The Yay Lunch team plans to use the additional funding and expertise of their investors in the food and education space to optimize their offering, build their team, expand their geographic footprint, and deepen penetration through service to more schools in their current markets. Jon Shulkin, Valor Equity Partners Co-President and Valor Siren Ventures Fund Manager, saw an opportunity to change the course of institutional food service through Yay Lunch. "We are thrilled to be a part of the YL journey. Stretching access to quality food for kids throughout the East Coast and Midwest and growing rapidly, YL is building a sustainable solution that is the next evolution in kids' food away from home, starting with school lunch." Yay Lunch leverages a tech-enabled platform connecting parents, schools, and local vendors to deliver on its goal of simplifying and enhancing the school lunch experience, while supporting the need of each stakeholder to strengthen the local community.

Yay Lunch was born out of genuine frustration for Liva, Founder, CEO, and mom of three, who was tired of settling for less while being forced to do more. "School lunch is hard. Parents are strapped for time to shop, prep and pack meals, schools lack resources to provide nutritious lunches and kids suffer from sub-par options that do little to fuel their learning. Our goal is to remove obstacles for everyone involved in providing kids with better-for-you meals that excite them. We're thrilled to offer affordable meals made with real ingredients and made fresh locally everyday."

For more information about Yay Lunch, please visit and follow on Instagram @yaylunch.

About Yay Lunch

Yay Lunch is a new business concept with the mission to empower local communities by connecting people to real food, made fresh daily. Today, they are providing a meal solution that improves food quality and access where kids learn and play. Their food services support local vendors and remove all the pain points for school administrators and parents when it comes to supplying nutritious and tasty meals to kids. Since launching a pilot in Spring 2018, they have expanded rapidly now serving multiple markets along the East Coast and growing.

About Valor Siren Ventures

The Valor Siren Ventures (VSV) mission is to be the leading innovation engine and investor in early-stage food, food technology, retail, and retail technology investing. Rooted in Valor's history of food and retail technology, Valor believes there is an opportunity to develop a new model for venture investing with VSV. Our team aspires to create value by generating differentiated investment opportunities, applying our intellectual capital, and accelerating the growth of portfolio companies through operations assistance in scaling.


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