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Flipdish founders
Flipdish co-founders James McCarthy (left) and Conor McCarthy (right). Image credit: PRNewsfoto / Flipdish

The Week in Agrifoodtech: Consumer foodtech players Flipdish, Yumi & La Vie raise large rounds

January 20, 2022

One of this week’s biggest fundings went to Flipdish — a US startup providing software that powers payments, online ordering, and delivery for foodservice enterprises — which netted a massive $100 million in a round led by Chinese tech giant Tencent.

Elsewhere, Indian agtech startups continued their run of major headlines as WayCool and Arya closed big rounds, while DeHaat completed a significant strategic acquisition.

[Disclosure: AFN’s parent company, AgFunder, is an investor in Aigen, DeHaat, Faeth Therapeutics, and IntegriCulture.] 

Agtech startup funding

🇰🇷 GreenLabs gets $140 million in Series C round. The Seoul-based company provides growers with a ‘smart farm’ management system and app, and a marketplace so they can sell their produce to enterprise customers. (GreenLabs)

🇮🇳 WayCool Foods raises $117 million in Series D funding. The startup, which helps farmers sell their produce to businesses online, says it will use the funds to boost its “deeptech” and automation capabilities. (AFN)

🇮🇳 Arya closes $60 million Series C round. Another $100 million fundraise “should be done” in the first half of the year, according to the grain commerce platform. (The Economic Times

🇬🇧 Vertical Future secures £21 million ($28.6 million) funding. It’s Europe’s “largest ever” Series A fundraising round in the vertical farming sector, according to the company. (Reuters

🇧🇷 Ag fintech startup Agrolend raises $21 million. Valor Capital Group led a $14 million Series A round; another $7 million will go towards setting up a credit investment vehicle. (AFN

🇻🇳 Online farm produce platform Mio raises $8 million. The intermediary between sellers and buyers of fresh produce will use the funding from Jungle Ventures, Patamar Capital, and others to boost its distribution and supply chain capabilities. (VnExpress)

🇮🇳 Pluckk nets $5 million seed capital. Founded last year, the Bengaluru-based startup is building a ‘farmer-to-consumer’ e-commerce platform for fresh produce. It will use some of the funds to acquire local counterpart Indus Fresh. (The Economic Times)

🇺🇸 Agtonomy raises $5 million seed extension round with participation from Toyota Ventures, Flybridge. The company ‘upfits’ tractors and other pieces of farm equipment so they can operate autonomously. (TechCrunch)

🇺🇸  Aigen scores $4 million round for its solar-powered robotics platform. The bulk of the seed capital will go towards new hires. (AFN

🇵🇱 Indoor farming tech provider Plantalux secures $1.4 million funding. The Lublin-based company’s main products are advanced LED lamps and control systems for greenhouses and indoor farms. (Horti Daily

Foodtech startup funding

🇺🇸 Flipdish raises $100 million in Tencent-led round. The digital ordering platform for hospitality says it is now valued at $1.25 billion. (Flipdish

🇺🇸 Organic baby food brand Yumi bags $67 million. Female-founded and female-led Yumi will use the funds to expand into new product lines retail channels. (Food Business News)

🇫🇷 Natalie Portman-backed vegan bacon maker raises €25 million ($28.4 million). Previously named 77 Foods, La Vie will use the proceeds of the Seventures-led Series A round to launch its plant-based products, including rashers and lardons, across France and the UK. (Green Queen)

🇺🇸 Khosla Ventures and Future Ventures lead a $20 million seed round for Faeth Therapeutics. Faeth is developing precision nutrition solutions to help fight cancer and is set to commence first-in-human clinical trials. (AFN)

🇺🇸 Turing Labs, which uses AI to help formulate CPG products, raises $16.5 million. The Series A round was led by Insight Partners, with previous investors Moment Ventures and Y Combinator joining in. (TechCrunch)

🇬🇧 VFC closes £7.5 million ($10.2 million) seed round. The vegan fried ‘chicken’ brand will use the funds to expand its geographic reach outside the UK, with a focus on the US. (Plant Based News

VFC’s lineup of plant-based fried chicken products. Image credit: VFC

🇯🇵 IntegriCulture scores $7 million funding for ‘outside-factor-free’ cell ag. The Tokyo-based startup aims to create a “universally accessible cellular agriculture platform” by providing growth media and other solutions at relatively low cost. (AFN)

🇺🇸 Chef portal Castiron announces $6 million seed round. Castiron users can create e-commerce sites, manage inventory, and access order fulfillment and marketing tools through the platform. (TechCrunch)

🇬🇧 Mamamade raises £1.5 million ($2 million) in “record-setting” pre-seed round for “healthy” baby food. Mamamade delivers fresh, plant-based, nutrient-dense meals for babies and toddlers directly to consumers. (Vegconomist)

🇬🇧 Vegan dog food startup Omni raises €1.3 million ($1.48 million). ProVeg International, Trellis Road, Purple Orange Ventures, Shiocap, and Kale United were among the investors to back the company. (EU-Startups)

🇳🇬 Nigerian restaurant management startup Orda raises $1.1 million in pre-seed funding. Capital will go towards expanding the Lagos-based startup’s platform across African. (Disrupt Africa)

M&A, IPOs & partnerships

🇺🇸 Daily Harvest teams up with American Farmland Trust and California Certified Organic Farmers. The trio will offer financial and technical services to underserved farmers looking to transition to organic practices. (Daily Harvest

🇺🇸 Atlast Food partners with Whitecrest Mushrooms for meatless bacon. The collaboration will allow Atlast to scale production of its “whole cut” meatless bacon made with mushrooms. (Food Navigator

🇮🇳 DeHaat acquires Helicrofter for undisclosed amount. This is the third acquisition for ag marketplace DeHaat and will allow it to enter Maharashtra, one of India’s key agricultural states. (YourStory

🇩🇪🇳🇱 Infarm partners with Dutch e-grocer. The indoor farming company will become the exclusive supplier of fresh herbs to Crisp, which claims to be the Netherlands’ fastest-growing online supermarket. (Infarm)

Funds, grants & accelerators

🇺🇸 Hazel Technologies gets another innovation grant from the US Department of Agriculture. Hazel, which extends the shelf life of produce through food tech, has received five grants from the agency totaling $1.5 million. (The Packer

🇨🇦 Agtech-focused VC Emmertech closes C$60 million ($48 million) fund. Emmertech’s goal is to drive adoption of agtech solutions and processes across Canada. (Financial Post

🇺🇸 John Deere picks seven companies for its 2022 Startup Collaborator Program. Startups working on robotics, augmented reality, carbon measurement tools and other technologies were chosen. (Successful Farming)

Other news

🇺🇸 Vertical farming company Plenty appoints new CEO. Arama Kukutai is co-founder of agrifoodtech VC Finistere Ventures. Matt Barnard, Plenty’s co-founder and former CEO, will continue to serve the company as executive chairman. (Plenty)

🇺🇸 Upward Farms planning a 250,000-square-foot growing facility. The indoor agriculture-meets-aquaculture operation — which is claimed to be company’s, and possibly the world’s, largest vertical farm to date — will open in Pennsylvania next year. (TechCrunch)

🇯🇵 CRISPR-edited fish comes to Japan. The country has approved the sale of a tiger puffer and a red sea bream, both edited by CRISPR technologies by the Kyoto-based startup Regional Fish Institute with Kyoto University and Kindai University. (Nature

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