February 24, 2017
New Jersey Business Magazine
Princeton-based Flatev, a startup company that plans to revolutionize the way consumers prepare a wide variety of flatbreads, will be establishing its first worldwide manufacturing operation at the Rutgers Food Innovation Center business incubator facility in Bridgeton. The company, headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, met with officials from Choose New Jersey, Inc., the Rutgers Food Innovation Center, and other business leaders today, and demonstrated their Flatev Artisan Baking System. The system gives consumers the ability to produce freshly baked, tasty, and nutritious artisanal flatbreads with the push of a button.
The Flatev Artisan Baking System is a table-top household appliance that makes fresh tortillas, pita, roti, and other flatbreads, as well as cookies, with a single-serve dough portion, that is as consistent and easy-to-use as a single-serve coffee maker. The Flatev dough single-serves will be produced at the Rutgers Food Innovation Center during the fall of 2017. The appliance and single-serves will be sold to a limited number of service hotels, offices, and to consumers shortly thereafter.
“The business began as a result of my interest in producing authentic, healthy tortillas, just like my mother made for me when I was a child growing up in Mexico,” said Carlos Ruiz, Founder, CEO and Chairman of Flatev. “Our Artisan Baking System produces organic, all natural tortillas and flatbreads, which are non-GMO and contain no artificial preservatives or additives. The hot just-baked tortillas, which are ready in less than two minutes, are scrumptious, fresh, and carry an amazing aroma.”
Flatev raised almost $5 million in its initial round of funding, which has enabled the company to complete all of its appliance engineering and dough product development, finalize its prototypes, gain patents on its process, and build a team in both Switzerland and the US.
“We are very pleased that Flatev has chosen to establish their first global operation within our FDA and USDA inspected facility in Bridgeton, New Jersey,” said Lou Cooperhouse, Executive Director of the Rutgers Food Innovation Center. “There is a clear consumer trend in conveniently packaged products that are freshly prepared at home, and away from home, and Flatev is pioneering this trend in a category where freshness is extremely important. The global kitchen appliance market also is expected to grow significantly in the years ahead, and we believe that Flatev’s growth can be quite substantial in both retail and foodservice markets.”
Choose New Jersey, a private non-profit organization charged with encouraging and nurturing economic growth throughout the State, provided assistance to Flatev to ensure a smooth move to New Jersey, including an introduction to the resources available to food companies at the Rutgers Food Innovation Center.
“We welcome Flatev to New Jersey’s growing food industry,” said Michele Brown, president and CEO of Choose New Jersey, Inc. “New Jersey has powerful assets, including the resources at the Food Innovation Center, to help pioneering start-up companies like Flatev flourish. Their first-to-market baking system will be a welcome addition to the Garden State’s growing list of innovative food products.”