Finistere Ventures, a global agrifood investment specialist, Israeli venture investor OurCrowd, Tnuva, an Israeli food manufacturer, and Tempo Beverages, an Israeli beverage company, are teaming up to focuse on investing in FoodTech and AgTech innovation in Israel.
Centered on Israeli technologies throughout the food and beverage value chain – from alternative proteins and nutritional value improvements, to functional ingredients and supply chain efficiency – the consortium will invest up to USD100m in local best-in-class agrifood startups.
The partnership was created following the Israeli government’s establishment of an innovation incubator in Northern Israel focused on FoodTech. Finistere Ventures, OurCrowd, Tnuva and Tempo Beverages will be bidding to operate the incubator being built as part of Kiryat Shemona’s planned innovation centre, to intensify their investment in the Israeli FoodTech community.
Together Finistere, OurCrowd, Tnuva, and Tempo, will actively encourage, support and invest in Israeli entrepreneurs building new companies to meet evolving consumer demands and transform the current ag and food chain. Thanks to the partners’ extensive industry network, entrepreneurs will also be able to gain direct access to leading global food and beverage giants such as PepsiCo, Bright Food, Heineken and Nutrien.
Co-Founder and Partner at Finistere Ventures Arama Kukutai, says: “Israel has become a top innovation hub in the FoodTech and AgTech arena. We are committed to expanding our local partner network and, most importantly, increasing our investment in, and support of, Israeli disruptors across the entire food and ag value chains as they look to penetrate the global market.”
OurCrowd CEO Jon Medved, says: “FoodTech is now one of the hottest dishes on the Israeli innovation menu. When four innovation master chefs Finistere, OurCrowd, Tnuva, and Tempo get together to cook and create the newest companies the results are going to be scrumptious.”
The consortium brings together two leading venture investors: Finistere and OurCrowd. OurCrowd, Israel’s most active venture investor, has USD1 billion in commitments and has made investments in 170 companies and funds, including foodtech portfolio company Beyond Meat – ((NASDAQ:BYND), which recently completed 2019’s most successful IPO and is currently trading at a value of over USD4 billion). Finistere Ventures is a global USD150 million fund dedicated to investments in agrifood technologies and supported by investors such as AVAC, Bayer, Ireland’s Strategic Investment Fund, Nutrien, PepsiCo, and Unigrains. Entrepreneurs will gain access to OurCrowd’s extensive Israeli startup power including a community of 30,000 registered investors from over 180 countries and Finistere’s global network of the leading agrifood investors, accelerators/incubators, and public research institutions. In fact, the two firms already work together in partnership with US-based Radicle Growth Fund, which recently announced its intention to make seed investments in Israeli FoodTech and AgTech companies as well.
As the leading Israeli food and beverage companies, Tnuva and Tempo have a long history of promoting FoodTech innovation, working with startups and academic institutions. With extensive operations in Northern Israel, they have a stronghold on the local food industry and changing consumer/sustainability needs, as well as a rich ecosystem of farmers, employees and industry contacts to leverage for emerging entrepreneurs. With tremendous global partners like Bright Food, Heineken Enterprises, PepsiCo, Soda Stream, and more, Tempo and Tnuva hope to create open innovation forums through the consortium.
Tnuva CEO, Eyal Malis, says: “Today, more than half of Tnuva’s activity is located in the north of Israel. The Ministry of Economy’s decision to establish the FoodTech project in the Northern city of Kiryat Shemona is a unique opportunity for us to reach groundbreaking results, and the fact that we have joined a number of strong partners with extensive activity and experience creates a strong foundation to promote and advance FoodTech innovation around the world.”
Tempo Chairman and CEO, Jacques Beer, says: “The food industry, a traditional industry at its core, is experiencing the challenges of the new world, one of rapid change and innovation, in both product and process. At Tempo, having internalised the need and desire to be at the forefront of this development, we have innovated and renewed all our areas of activity. In both products and processes, we have worked closely and intensively with our international partners. This is the knowledge and experience we seek to bring into the consortium. We are confident that together with our partners, we will develop in Israel’s Northern region, the next great technological breakthroughs of Israel in the world of FoodTech.”
With each partner offering unique experience, knowledge and resources, the consortium will give entrepreneurs guidance across a broad range of activities, including technology development and due diligence, team building, business development, seed and Series A investment strategies, and the production and marketing of food.