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Cibus Capital's Sustainable Milestone: Closing Multi-Million Dollar Funds for the Future of Food and Agriculture

Courtesy of Federico Respini via Unsplash
Courtesy of Federico Respini via Unsplash

Cibus Capital, a London-headquartered specialist investment advisory firm, has made a significant stride in the sustainable food and agriculture sector with the closure of two funds: Cibus Fund II and Cibus Enterprise Fund II. This move marks a pivotal moment in the firm’s journey, reflecting its ongoing commitment to fostering sustainable practices in the food industry through strategic investments.

Cibus Fund II has successfully secured over $510 million in commitments, demonstrating strong confidence from a diversified investor base, which includes both returning and new participants. Among the notable investors are the Los Angeles County Employee Retirement Association and the Retail Employees Superannuation Trust (REST), one of Australia’s leading profit-to-member superannuation funds, highlighting the fund's appeal to institutional investors.

Simultaneously, Cibus Enterprise Fund II (CE II) has garnered over $135 million in commitments. This venture fund focuses on late-stage companies driving technological innovations that promise to revolutionize food production and processing, aiming to increase resource efficiency and sustainability.

Founded in 2016, Cibus Capital’s mission is to direct capital towards companies at the forefront of using technology to create the future of food, ensuring that sustainability is at the heart of these innovations. The firm's investment strategy is timely and critical, especially given the growing global population and the pressing need to produce more food with fewer resources.

The backdrop to Cibus Capital's initiatives is a world grappling with food security challenges, heightened by recent events such as Russia's invasion of Ukraine, climate change concerns, and the pandemic's impact on trade and supply chains. These factors, along with spikes in energy prices affecting fertilizer availability and thus food prices, underscore the urgency for sustainable solutions in food production.

Cibus Capital's approach is innovative and forward-looking, employing new technologies and methods like hydroponics, lab-grown meat, and drone land monitoring to enhance agricultural productivity while adhering to sustainable practices. The firm has seen a dramatic increase in interest from various quarters, including high net worth individuals, institutional investors from North America, and ESG-focused funds, signaling a broader shift towards sustainable investment in the food and agriculture sector.

The funds' investments reflect this ethos, with Cibus Fund II engaging in significant ventures such as Withcott Seedlings, a major player in Australia’s nursery market, and Alba Trees in the UK, known for its sustainable forestry practices. Meanwhile, CE II has made 10 investments across sectors including robotics, precision chemistry for crop protection, and natural capital, emphasizing the fund's role in promoting sustainable innovation in agriculture.

The leadership of Cibus Capital, including Alastair Cooper, head of venture, and Rob Appleby, founder and CIO, bring a wealth of experience and a personal commitment to sustainable agriculture and food production. Their backgrounds in finance, agriculture, and technology investment allow Cibus Capital to uniquely position itself as a catalyst for positive change in the industry, aiming to achieve significant impacts on resource efficiency, GHG emissions reduction, biodiversity, food security, human health, and animal welfare.

Cibus Capital’s recent fund closures not only represent a substantial financial achievement but also reaffirm the firm’s pivotal role in shaping a more sustainable future for the global food and agriculture sector. By partnering with innovative companies that offer sustainable competitive advantages, Cibus Capital is set to make a lasting impact on the industry, providing risk-adjusted returns for investors while addressing some of the most pressing challenges facing our planet today.


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