Equinom, the company on a mission to cultivate better food from the ground up, has announced a $35 million tranche of funding to bring more of its optimized plant protein ingredients to market. The capital raise was led by Synthesis Capital (Synthesis), a leading global food technology and alternative protein investor, with additional investment from Praesidium, Bunge Ventures, the for-profit global investment arm of Bunge, BayWa, CPT Capital and returning investors Fortissimo and Phoenix. This brings the total funding for Equinom to over $71 million to date.
With expertise in food, technology and agriculture, Equinom breeds new non-GMO varieties of the plant-based food industry’s primary source crops including pea and soy, optimized specifically for food, so they require only minimal processing, thereby improving taste and nutrition and reducing cost and complexity. This is made possible by the company’s proprietary Manna™ technology platform which uses advanced algorithms to characterize the biochemical and genomic traits in a vast array of seed varieties, enabling the development of new ingredients with desirable traits for food production (such as mild taste, light color, high protein, etc.) – all without genetic modification. As a result, these new minimally processed plant proteins enable food companies to develop offerings that meet consumer demand for tastier and more affordable sustainable alternatives to meat and dairy.
Equinom will use this new capital to accelerate the commercialization of its plant-based protein ingredients which will be sold to food companies via established multinational ingredient suppliers. The capital will also fund investments in seed development and grain production of their ultra-high protein varieties of non-GMO soy and pea, along with the addition of key personnel and research and development into ongoing breeding programs for additional protein source crops including chickpea, fava, mung bean, and cowpea.
“I’m excited to work with Synthesis and our other investors who clearly see the food revolution taking place and the huge opportunity to develop better plant protein ingredients – optimized from the ground up for the relevant food and beverage applications. Our investors share the understanding that good food must start with good ingredients,” said Gil Shalev, Equinom co-founder and CEO. “With this additional investment, we will be able to deliver our message, and our next generation, non-GMO ingredients to food companies who are ready to unlock category growth by delivering tastier, healthier, sustainable and affordable food options to every plate in the world.”
Strategic alignment was a key priority for Equinom when seeking funding partners. As lead investor, Synthesis will infuse capital from its Synthesis Capital Fund I (“Fund”), which raised over $300 million earlier this year for targeted investments in the food tech sector. Synthesis is committed to investing in emerging companies who are at the forefront of technology breakthroughs in the alternative protein category and are poised to shape the future of food.
“Today’s food system requires significant transformation if we are to slow the effects of climate change and feed a growing population expected to reach 10 billion by 2050,” said Costa Yiannoulis, managing partner and co-founder of Synthesis Capital. “We see alternative proteins as a critical solution and feel energized by Gil’s vision and commitment to address some of the greatest challenges facing the plant-based industry at their source, through innovating to revolutionize traditional inputs into the process. We clearly see the value Equinom ingredients can generate throughout the food supply chain – and within our portfolio.”