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Australian plant-based meat startup v2food has just announced a AU$77 million (US$55 million) Series B round, breaking records as the largest funding round in the category within the country. The financing was led by major institutional investors, including Li Ka-shing’s Horizons Ventures, Singapore’s sovereign fund Temasek and Sequoia Capital China. V2food says the capital will go towards completing its production facility, growing its team and expanding into new markets with its main target being Asia.
V2food’s latest US$55 million Series B round – the biggest in Australia’s plant-based meat sector yet – saw the participation of existing and new investors from around the world, including British VC and private equity firm Altitude Partners; Australian government-backed innovation fund Main Sequences Ventures; Marinya Capital, the family office of the Fairfax family; and investment firm Novel Investments.
The round also drew funding from major Asian investors, such as Singapore-headquartered ABC World Asia; Li Ka-shing’s Horizon Ventures based in Hong Kong; Chinese investment bank China Renaissance; Shanghai-based Esenagro; Sequoia Capital China; and Temasek, Singapore’s government fund. It brings v2food’s total funding so far to AUD$113 million (US$ 80 million).
v2food has had a global view since our founding, and this investment will help us establish our business in Asia, Europe and the rest of the world.Nick Hazell, Founder & CEO of v2food
The Sydney-based food tech says that it will be using the capital injection to scale-up its operations, enable the company to complete the construction of its Wodonga-based production site, and crucially, to launch its products into new markets in Asia.
“This funding is a pivotal step towards v2food’s goal of transforming the way the world produces food. It’s imperative that we continue to scale quickly because this global issue needs an immediate solution,” said Nick Hazell, founder and CEO of v2food.
“As we enter our next phase of growth, we are grateful to have the support of world-renowned investors who share our urgent mission of solving the global food challenge. v2food has had a global view since our founding, and this investment will help us establish our business in Asia, Europe and the rest of the world.”
We are pleased to be joined by an assembly of world-class investors to support the company’s international export ambitions.Phil Morle, Partner at Main Sequence Ventures
V2food first launched in 2019, out of a partnership with Australia’s national science agency CSIRO, its innovation fund Main Sequence Ventures and Competitive Foods Australia, one of the country’s largest private businesses that owns Hungry Jack’s, the Burger King franchise in the country.
Its flagship plant-based meat products are vegan mince analogue and a plant-based burger patty made with protein extracted from legumes. These are currently available in thousands of outlets across the country, including at Hungry Jack’s, where the Rebel Whopper is served, and since earlier this year, at Burger King New Zealand as well.
Beyond foodservice, v2food has expanded its retail footprint in the region, most recently launching its products at more than 600 Woolworths outlets, Australia’s biggest supermarket chain.
Given the growing appetite for plant-based meat across the world in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, which has raised consumer awareness of the dangers of the animal meat supply chain, investors are clearly banking on the startup to tap into international markets, especially in Asia.
“v2 has gone from strength to strength,” commented Phil Morle, partner at Main Sequence Ventures. “We are pleased to be joined by an assembly of world-class investors to support the company’s international export ambitions.”
All images courtesy of v2food.