News for January 31, 2022
Recent Transactions in the Nutrition and Health & Wellness Industry:
Remilk raises $120M in a Series B round with precision fermentation that hits the mark
Holy cow! Remilk, an Israeli company that makes animal-free dairy proteins through precision fermentation, raised $120 million in a Series B round, increasing its financials 10-fold. The company will use this funding to scale commercial use of the ingredients in products including ice cream, cheese and yogurt and represents a growing body of companies focused on using unique processing and technologies to replicate animal-proteins sans animal.
Yolélé secures $1.98M in new funding for ancient grains
Investors are taking notice of Yolélé, a chef-driven brand bringing the West African ancient grain fonio to U.S. consumers. The company is part of an agro-processing operation called WAAG, which will build a supply chain connecting smallholder farmers with local and global markets for biodiverse, climate-resilient crops. A grant of $1.98 million for WAAG will support U.S. market development and promotion, supply chain development and the establishment of a new Mali-based processing center.
Investment heats up for cold-brew coffee startup Brewbike
Add a splash of college-minded entrepreneurship to your cuppa joe and you have a rich idea, according to investors. Evanston, Illinois-based Brewbike, which currently operates student-run coffee businesses on four U.S. college campuses, raised more than $3 million in its latest round of bridge funding to expand operations. “With this new funding, we’ve launched our direct-to-consumer product, built a new brand and website, are expanding from four to 11 campuses with more on the way. We are excited for the reach and impact this funding will allow us to have and are excited to partner with everyone who participated,” said Sierra Bloodgood, CEO of Brewbike. Investors include CEAS Investments, Connetic Ventures, Koto, Techra Investments, Mats Lederhausen’s Be-Cause Ventures, Westbrook Inc., Joe Mansueto and Venetia Kontogouris.
Wellness Innovations BV’s fish-free positioning hooks investors, reels in €1.2M
(Almere, Netherlands) Wellness Innovations BV, whose consumer brands are Testa Omega-3 and Daily Supplements, announced a successful crowdfunding round, raising €1.2 million. Both Testa Omega-3 and Daily Supplements share a mission of eliminating all unnecessary fishing by 2035 and contain entirely plant-based portfolios. “We are already well on our way in this mission,” co-owner Martin de Vries said in a statement. But with the share of algal oil in the total omega-3 market only at around 5% “we still have a long way to go to realize our goal. Growth is therefore necessary and we are taking steps to the other continents. In addition, we are broadening our portfolio.”
Aw, smucks! JM Smucker sells off natural beverage and grains brands to Nexus Capital Management for $110M
Orrville, Ohio-based JM Smucker has agreed to sell its natural and organic beverage and grains businesses, including RW Knudsen and TruRoots brands, to Nexus Capital Management for $110 million. “This transaction supports our strategy to direct investments and resources toward core brands positioned for growth. By focusing resources on our core brands, including Uncrustables sandwiches, Jif and Smuckers, we are positioning ourselves to build on our market leadership while continuing to support the growth of the overall category,” said Tina Floyd, vice president and general manager of consumer foods at JM Smucker.
Wellbeam Consumer Health LLC bets on anti-aging’s longevity
(San Francisco) Wellbeam Consumer Health LLC recently announced the acquisition of BioTRUST Nutrition LLC., an eCommerce healthy living and nutrition brand, including protein, collagen, healthy living, anti-aging and digestive health products. “With the addition of BioTRUST to the portfolio, Wellbeam Consumer Health not only adds a fast-growing, differentiated brand and leader in the healthy aging space, but also offers a best-in-class data-driven DTC eCommerce competency on top of current deep expertise in eCommerce marketplace and brand management,” said Chris Marschall, CEO of Wellbeam Consumer Health. “The addition of BioTRUST is another significant step to building the leading eCommerce-focused consumer wellness company with a mission to help consumers live healthier lives.”
MycoWorks proves funghi fashion is in style, raises $125M in Series C financing
(Emeryville, California) First powder, then jerky, now textiles? That’s what MycoWorks believes is next for mushrooms, as it looks to replace leather with a fungal-based biomaterial. The company recently brought in $125 million in Series C financing, which it will use to fund a production plant for scaling the manufacture of its flagship product Reishi. “A lot is happening in this space,” said CEO Matt Scullin. “Mycelium is a tunable material, and a lot of folks are entering the space because they see opportunity for it.” MycoWorks aims to focus on high-quality, scalable practices with its latest round of funding.
Coffee talk: Dutch startup PectCof raises €2M
With a focus on transforming coffee pulp biomass into valuable bio compounds, Dutch startup PectCof has already proven the concept effective with its Dutch Gum, which has been successfully tested as an emulsifier, stabilizer and texturizer in candies, sauces and soft drinks. “We cut CO2 emissions and pollution by recognizing coffee pulp as a valuable resource while we also create an additional revenue stream for coffee farmers,” said Founder Rudi Dieleman.
Investors dance with Foxtrot’s reimagined convenience store concept
Consumers and investors are eating up this fresh, innovative take on the classic convenience store; since 2020, Chicago-based Foxtrot has added 16 retail locations across Dallas, Chicago and Washington D.C. and is now offering curated artisan products in addition to its core offerings of coffee, ready-to-eat cafe meals and wine. Its latest Series C round of $160 million was led by led D1 Capital Partners, which was joined by existing investors Monogram Capital, Imaginary, Almanac, Wittington, Fifth Wall, Beliade, Lerer Hippeau and Revolution.
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