By Kayla Sargent
Hot on the heels of Beyond Meats’ beyond successful initial public offering (IPO), Impossible Foods recorded a record-high investment round for the plant-based protein industry. With famous names in the hat like Serena Williams, Jay-Z, and Katy Perry, the company raised $300 million in the most recent investment round, bringing their total funding to $750 million and their market valuation to $2 billion.
“With these two companies now valued in the billions of dollars, it’s clear that the plant-based meat market is both hot and here to stay,” GFI Executive Director Bruce Friedrich said.
At the beginning of the month, Impossible Foods also experienced the plant-based protein industry’s largest market roll out when Burger King decided to offer the “Impossible Whopper” at nearly 7,300 restaurants nationwide.
The most recent round of funding will help to “scale up” Impossible Foods’ production as they are struggling to meet the growing demand for their product. Impossible Foods CFO David Lee told CNN Business that they plan to hire at least 50 new employees at the Oakland, California factory that currently employs 70 people. Lee said there are also tentative plans to open more manufacturing facilities.
Still, Lee said he is concerned about keeping up with growing demand.
“There will be times when we have more supply than the demand immediately available, and soon enough we’ll outgrow that ability to supply,” he said. “We are so small today that, until we reach a sizable portion of the overall market, I think we’re going to be growing to meet this scorching demand that we’re seeing today.”
He added that he will continue working hard to raise capital. But unlike their competitor, Beyond Meat, there are no immediate plans for an initial public offering of Impossible Foods. According to Reuters, Lee carefully watched as Beyond Meat became a publicly traded company and said it was “validation” of the opportunity, but did not change their plans for an Impossible Foods IPO.
“I think their IPO indicates that retail investors, along with retail consumers, are ready for something better than the meat they’ve been eating for decades,” Lee told Reuters. “But we are not in a rush, nor are we announcing an IPO filing. We believe in self-reliance. Being ready to go public is a priority for the company because we need to be operating at the highest level.”BACK