Vaekstfonden’s Green Future Fund and longtime Rockstart supporters Marcel Beemsterboer, Jasper de Rooij, Hans Maltha all continued their investments in the project. New investors include Joke Pronk and dairy cooperative Arla Foods.
This healthy new harvest of funds will allow Rockstart to further invest in Agritech and Foodtech startups as well as co-invest in existing portfolio companies up to Series B.
“Our global food industry is poised for an overdue transition to more sustainable and regenerative practices. The fact that industry leaders, such as Arla, Vaekstfonden and many others, put their faith in Rockstart by investing further in our AgriFood fund makes us even more optimistic that we can deliver on our mission,” comments AgriFood managing partner Mark Durno.
Since launching in mid-2019, Agrifood has invested in 20 startups to date, making it one of the most active in 2020. Demonstrating the Agrifood’s fund success rate, Rockstart reports a +70% follow-on funding rate, with startups collectively raising just under €10 million.
Rockstar’s AgriFood fund is looking long-term. The company is on board with the European Union’s 2050 strategic vision of transitioning towards climate neutrality, as well as the UN’s 17 Goals initiative, and most recently partnered with us on our To The Point series to discuss Green Innovation in Europe.
And it’s exactly this philosophy and proven track record that garnered Arla Food’s attention.
“We have an ambitious climate target of reducing our CO2 emissions by 30% in 2030 and becoming carbon net-zero by 2050, while continuing to provide consumers all over the world with nutritious quality products,” says Arla’s SVP for Product and Innovation Lars Dalsgaard. “In order to deliver a strong contribution to a future-proof and sustainable food supply system we rely on collaboration with startups and other external partners to bring new solutions to our innovation ecosystem. Through startups, we get access to technologies and knowledge outside our own field of expertise, and we are looking very much forward to see where this will take us”.
The Rockstart AgriFood 2021 programme will specifically focus on regenerative food production, circular processes and distribution, and quantifiable food consumption.