SoftBank-backed Gousto in $230 million secondary placing

LONDON (Reuters) - British recipe box company Gousto has completed a $230 million secondary placement, led by existing investor Japan's SoftBank, it said on Thursday.

The secondary placement follows a January fundraise of $150m in primary capital, including a $100m equity investment from SoftBank Vision Fund 2, which Gousto said valued the business at $1.7 billion.

Gousto, which offers meal-kit options with an emphasis on healthier foods, has been the subject of speculation regarding a possible initial public offering (IPO).

The placing adds Fidelity International, Grosvenor Food & AgTech and Railpen to Gousto's share register, partially replacing some early stage venture capital shareholders.

Timo Boldt, Gousto's CEO who founded the company in 2012, said SoftBank's increased investment "speaks volumes for where they see the business heading."

Its other investors include Perwyn Private Equity, Canaccord Genuity, Unilever Ventures, and Joe Wicks, the fitness guru.

(The story amends headline, adds line to fourth graph on early investors.)

(Reporting by James Davey; editing by William James and Kate Holton)

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