Vertical farming firm Bowery raises $300M, valuing agency at $2.3B

Dive Transient:

  • Bowery Farming raised $300 million in a funding spherical that values the largest vertical farming firm in the U.S. at $2.3 billion, the corporate mentioned in a press release.
  • Bowery will use the cash to construct extra good indoor farms, recruit and rent workers and assist ongoing analysis and product innovation efforts to develop past leafy greens, kale and basil. The newest funding spherical was led by Constancy Administration & Analysis Firm. Different traders embrace GV, the funding arm of Google, singer-songwriter Justin Timberlake and actress Natalie Portman.
  • Indoor agriculture has been among the many hottest locations for traders to place their cash through the previous yr as recent, regionally grown lettuce, tomatoes and different produce have develop into extra in style amongst customers seeking to eat more healthy. 

Dive Perception:

Whereas agriculture has been largely confined outdoor for hundreds of years, traders are betting massive that indoor farming would be the future by making use of massive values to younger startup firms.

AppHarvest, the one one of many bunch to go public thus far, has seen its worth rise from about $1 billion on the time of its particular goal acquisition firm (SPAC) deal in 2020 to greater than $1.5 billion at present. Vertical farming firm AeroFarms introduced in March it additionally would use a SPAC to go public. The brand new firm is predicted to have an estimated fairness worth of about $1.2 billion. Different indoor farming operations which have raised vital quantities of cash embrace Revol Greens and BrightFarms.

In keeping with PitchBook information cited by Reuters, practically $1.9 billion of worldwide enterprise capital was invested in indoor farming in 2020, practically tripling the extent in 2019.

Within the case of Bowery, the New York-based firm would command a whopping valuation above $2 billion. The fast-growing enterprise sells its merchandise in greater than 850 shops together with Albertsons’ Safeway and Acme chains, Walmart and Complete Meals Market. Because it builds new farms, invests in costly know-how and hires extra workers — all whereas increasing into different types of produce like strawberries or tomatoes — Bowery will want loads of money.

“This infusion of latest capital from Constancy, different new traders, and the extra assist of our long-term investor companions is acknowledgement of the essential want for brand new options to our present agricultural system, and the big financial alternative that comes with supporting our mission,” mentioned Irving Fain, Bowery’s CEO.

The mission of indoor greenhouses like these operated by Bowery mirror many tendencies which can be necessary to customers at present. They’ll develop produce all yr spherical and achieve this utilizing much less water and with out pesticides. The greenhouses additionally might be near cities — chopping down on power used to move the produce and feeding massive quantities of individuals within the course of — or areas of the nation that in any other case can be tough to serve.

Bowery, based in 2015, is at present reworking an industrial web site in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, into its largest, most technologically superior and sustainable farm, increasing its attain additional into the Northeast and Pennsylvania area. Bowery will probably be breaking floor on different large-scale industrial farms in 2021, and is actively engaged in figuring out new farm places in the USA with an eye fixed towards international growth. 

With demand for produce and curiosity in how it’s grown rising, indoor farms are in a race to acquire a first-mover relationship with many retailers and customers. 

Putting first might pay dividends down the street as shops resolve to show indoor farms’ produce in additional places or carry extra styles of their greens and fruits. Indoor farms have to have a number of greenhouses to not solely develop quite a few sorts of produce but additionally serve retailers in lots of areas all through the nation on the similar time. They can not afford to sit down idle, and have little selection however to maneuver rapidly.

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