The indoor vertical farming startup Bowery Farming has raised $300 million in a Series C funding round. This brings the total funding that the New York-based company has raised to date up to $472 million and gives the company a valuation of $2.3 billion.
The funding round was led by Fidelity Management & Research Company, which is a new investor. Other existing investors to take part were GV (formerly Google Ventures), Temasek, Groupe Artémis, GGV capital, and General Catalyst. New investors included Amplo and Gaingels, along with some celebrity investors like Natalie Portman, Lewis Hamilton, and Justin Timberlake.
Bowery Farming has been enjoying a period of rapid expansion in recent times. Back at the start of 2020, its produce was available in 100 stores. By September 2020 the number of stores had increased to 650, and as of now its produce is available in 850 stores across the US, including major retailers such as Whole Foods and Walmart. In percentage terms, the increase in availability since January 2020 is a whopping 750%.
Interest in indoor farming is growing. The pandemic has highlighted the importance of local food supply and indoor farms are a solution to this problem. In a statement, Iving Fain, CEO and Founder of Bowery Farming, was enthusiastic about the funding round. “At Bowery, we’re reinventing a new supply chain that’s simpler, safer, more sustainable and ultimately provides vibrantly flavorful produce unlike what’s available today.”
Fain went on to detail how the funding would be allocated by Bowery.
“This infusion of new capital from Fidelity, other new investors, and the additional support of our long-term investor partners is acknowledgement of the critical need for new solutions to our current agricultural system, and the enormous economic opportunity that comes with supporting our mission. This funding not only fuels our continued expansion but the ongoing development of our proprietary technology, which sits at the core of our business and our ability to rapidly and efficiently scale towards an increasingly important opportunity in front of us.”
One of Bowery’s first acts of expansion will be to open its largest farm to date. It will be located in an industrial area of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. More indoor farms will follow across the US, and apparently there is an eye on global expansion.
Featured image courtesy Bowery Farming.
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