Singapore food tech Next Gen is bringing its plant-based chicken brand Tindle into new markets, launching in Hong Kong, Macau and Kuala Lumpur simultaneously next month. Partnering with distributor Classic Fine Foods, Tindle will make its way into restaurant menus across the three Asian cities as plant-based demand across the region continues to grow.
Next Gen is expanding internationally, launching its chicken-free analogue Tindle to Hong Kong, Macau and Kuala Lumpur, the company announced today (May 20). Starting from June 24, restaurants across the three cities will be revealing new dishes made with Tindle, the vegan chicken analogue made from soy protein, wheat protein, sunflower oil, coconut oil and oat fibre.
Tindle debuted in March across 11 restaurants in its home city of Singapore, including at establishments run by Michelin-starred chefs, featuring in dishes inspired from cuisines all over the world, from Japanese to American-style food truck takeout classics. It has since expanded to more than 40 locations islandwide.
We are building a global food tech business with strategies and models adopted from the technology sector.Andre Menezes, Co-Founder & COO, Next Gen
The decision to launch Tindle in Hong Kong, Macau and Kuala Lumpur is a strategic move for the company to tap into the “great food and cultural hubs of Asia” and also reach mainland Chinese consumers, who make up a significant portion of the tourism industry in these destinations.
“We are building a global food tech business with strategies and models adopted from the technology sector. Our international expansion is driven by our asset-lite model, partner expertise, and funding resources, which collectively drive our operational scalability,” commented Next Gen co-founder and COO Andre Menezes.
“These three cities mark the second phase of our plan, following our Singapore launch. Our third phase will see us laying the groundwork for further international markets expansion.”
These three cities mark the second phase of our plan, following our Singapore launch. Our third phase will see us laying the groundwork for further international markets expansion.Andre Menezes, Co-Founder & COO, Next Gen
Menezes, who formerly managed Country Foods Singapore, one of the companies behind Impossible Foods’ distribution across Southeast Asia, started the company with CEO Timo Recker, who previously founded the plant-based brand LikeMeat.
Next Gen is fuelled by a US$10 million seed round that closed in February, which broke records as the largest seed fundraise in the global plant-based industry. It gained the backing of major investors such as Temasek, the Singapore Economic Development Board and K3 Ventures.
To enter these new markets, Next Gen is working with fine food distributor and specialist Classic Fine Foods, whose network spans 10 countries in Europe, the Middle East and Asia and is headquartered in Hong Kong. Classic Fine Foods is a subsidiary of multinational wholesale firm Metro AG, which has invested in Next Gen through its food tech innovation arm NX-Food.
“Classic Fine Foods has developed as the preferred go-to-market partner for the best plant-based brands. Our unique Asian multi-geography presence and deep understanding of the markets allow us to connect innovative brands with state-of-the-art chefs, and help increase consumers’ interest and demand for this category,” said Christophe Barret, CEO of Classic Fine Foods.
In the same announcement, Next Gen revealed that it has welcomed Marc-Antoine Jolly, who hails from the beverage industry, to its leadership team. As the company’s new Asia-Pacific Growth Director based in Hong Kong, Jolly will be managing the expansion of Tindle across the region as consumer demand shows no signs of slowing down.
According to a recent analysis, key Asia-Pacific markets are estimated to grow 200% within the next five years, driven by consumer concerns over health, food safety and sustainability.
Similarly bullish predictions have been made about the fast-growing plant-based demand in China, with a report highlighting the mainstreaming of flexitarianism as a key indicator of major growth in the country in the years to come.
All images courtesy of Next Gen / Tindle.