News for March 22, 2023
Recent Transactions in the Nutrition and Health & Wellness Industry:
New funding is flying in for Fly By Jing
Fly by Jing, known for its Sichuan Chili Crisp, has received $12 million in funding during a Series B round led by Prelude Growth Partners and Pendulum. The brand is creating various pantry staples inspired by the founder’s (Jing Gao) hometown of Chengdu, China. The new funding will support Fly by Jing’s quickly accelerating growth as it expands into large U.S. retailers such as Kroger and Albertsons.
Hemp funding is looking up
News in recent legal hemp and marijuana investments has been slow lately, especially with multiple states proposing more stringent regulations, which is why Nalu Bio’s recent funding stands out. A producer of synthetic cannabinoids, Nalu Bio recently completed a successful $12 million Series A round led by Intrinsic Capital Partners with participation from Flybridge Capital Partners, Portfolia Active Aging & Longevity Fund, Bonaventure Equity, L37 Ventures, Golden Seeds, Sacramento Angels, Brown Angel Group and Axial Venture. The new funds will accelerate the growth and scale production of the company’s non-hemp-derived cannabinoids, which it describes as safer and more cost reliable for creating consumer products and therapeutics.
Investments are popping off for Poppy Handcrafted Popcorn
North Carolina-based natural and gourmet popcorn brand Poppy recently announced a new $3 million in funding. The Series A round was led by ACS Capital and investor Jeff Immelt. Immelt has been appointed to the brand’s advisory board, and Chris Renno will join the board of directors. Poppy will use the new funds to purchase new equipment and technology, and double its manufacturing space. This will significantly increase Poppy’s production capacity and bring new jobs to the local Asheville economy
Investors: Bring me more immi
Better-for-you, plant-based, ramen brand immi has completed a $10M Series A round to bring its low-carb, high-protein ramen to mainstream retail. Touch Capital led the Series A round with participation from celebrity investors Naomi Osaka, Usher, Apolo Ohno, David Grutman, Kygo’s Palm Tree Crew, and Gryffin. The new funding will be used to hire key leadership team members, produce new flavor varieties and help scale as the brand expands into nationwide retail.
Nestlé invests in German meal-replacement startup
Nestlé is taking a minority stake in YFood, a startup focused on nutrient-dense snack bars, drinks and powders. Nestlé will just be investing and not taking over any operations or strategy. The Germany-based startup will remain in control and operate independently. The new strategic partnership with Nestlé will support international expansion and boost sales.
Wella brings Thunderbird under its umbrella
Wella, which manufactures better-for-you foods, has acquired nutrition bar maker Thunderbird. The acquisition is built on a partnership formed last year when Wella became Thunderbird’s co-packer. Financial terms were not disclosed, but this new deal will bring more convenient snack options to Wella’s portfolio.
Oats Overnight raises over $20M to continue its customer-led R&D
CPG oatmeal brand Oats Overnight recently announced the close to a Series A round that raised over $20 million in new funding. The round saw participation from Singh Capital Partners, BFG Partners, Impatient Ventures, Watchfire Ventures, Morrison Seger Venture Capital Partners, Vanterra Ventures, Access Capital and Pure Ventures. The new funding will support expanding into retail and furthering the brand’s research and development process, which is led by consumer feedback. Each month, Oats Overnight shares a new flavor pre-launch with over 100,000 of its active subscribers. The R&D team surveys and communicates directly with the customers for feedback and releases the newly tweaked and most popular flavors three months later.
OC Flavors acquires Novotaste
OC Flavors, which manufactures liquid and powdered flavors for the food, beverage and nutraceuticals industry, has acquired Canadian-based natural and organic flavor solutions producer Novotaste. This acquisition will see OC Flavors expand its footprint into Canada and the Northeastern U.S. It will also enhance OC Flavors’ development and production capabilities.
Novax acquires Louis François
Louis François, which develops specialty functional ingredients for artisanal food producers, has been acquired by Swedish investment firm Novax. Novax has also launched in connection to the acquisition of an initiative called Ingå Group focuses on healthy and sustainable ingredient solutions. The group comprises Louis François and U.K./Netherlands-based functional ingredient developer and supplier Ulrick & Short.
Danish biotech company closes extended seed round
Chromologics, a natural food colors producer, has closed an extended seed funding round. New investors Doehler Ventures and Thia Ventures brought in €7.1 million, bringing the company’s total funding to €12.6 million. The new funding will accelerate the commercialization of the company’s first product, Natu.Red. Natu.Redis a pH- and temperature-stable, tasteless, water-soluble, vegan, natural red food color.
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