13th June 2019
Ocado has announced a £17 million investment into the vertical farming industry, including an investment into Jones Food, Europe’s largest vertical farm. The investment into Jones Food, represents one of the largest investments into a UK agritech company so far this year. Law firm, Ashfords, advised Guinness Asset Management, the majority shareholder of Jones Food, in the transaction.
13th June 2019
Tonkotsu, the Emma Reynolds and Ken Yamada-founded ramen restaurant group plans expansion after partnering with investment firm YFM Equity Partners. The group, which is led by Managing Director, Stephen Evans, operates nine restaurants in London and one in Selfridges Birmingham, with two more due to open later this year in Peckham and Shoreditch.
Reynolds and Yamada continue to be involved in the business, and Yamada says: “This partnership will allow us to grow our business, enabling us to open a handful more Tonkotsus. Our commitment to the quality of our food, our homemade noodles and the way we treat our people, who are the heart of this business, has been fundamental from day one. We chose YFM as our partner as we felt they shared our ambition to grow the business in the right way to maintain the culture and the brand”
13th June 2019
Digital livestock production, smart plants and 24/7 indoor salad production are some of the ways the digital revolution is driving rapid growth in the agri-tech sector. Start-ups 30MHZ, Breedr and LettUs Grow are part of a new breed of technology companies aiming to improve productivity and sustainability in agriculture, but they will be quick to stress at CWIC 2019 that domain knowledge has been essential for success. They are presenting in the Agriculture track of the conference, hosted by Agri-Tech East and Allia Serious Impact.
10th June 2019
Foresight Group has invested £500,000 into Oomf Limited through the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (“MEIF”).
Originally based in Dorset, Oomf recently opened a new manufacturing site in Northampton, hiring several staff from the area. A premium high protein porridge brand, Oomf has two core product ranges, Protein Oats and Skinny Oats, which are currently sold through several major retail outlets including Sainsbury’s and Tesco.
6th June 2019
Award winning patisserie business La Crème Patisserie has acquired new premises near Newport following a £500,000 loan from the Development Bank of Wales.
The move into the 11,000 sq ft building, which is eight times larger than La Crème’s base at Baglan, comes as the company gears up for a new contract. They will be supplying cakes, desserts and afternoon teas to the new International Convention Centre Wales (ICCW) currently being built at the Celtic Manor Resort just outside Newport.
The investment by the development bank has already led to four new jobs being created, and the headcount is expected to be further increased to 30 over the next 6-18 months.
13th May 2019
Private investment and alternative finance specialist IW Capital announces a £1.83 million loan for Inglenook Inns and Taverns Limited. The loan represents the latest funding round for Inglenook to help grow and consolidate its regional presence across the North West of England.
10th May 2019
How and what we eat in restaurants or on-the-go is changing thanks to new robotics startup Karakuri and its £7 million seed investment, led by Ocado. With growing demand for personalised nutrition as part of a healthy lifestyle, Karakuri uses the latest innovation in robotics, machine learning, optics and sensors to allow restaurants and food retailers to offer personalised, freshly prepared, high quality meals, which maximise nutritional benefits and minimise food waste.
7th May 2019
With a line-up intent on shaking up the shopping basket, The Seed Fund has announced its Class of 2019, revealing the 14 food and drink start-ups that have been invited to join its summer Academy. Now in its seventh year, the philanthropic organisation will unite these ambitious entrepreneurs with top mentors from across the industry, during an intensive programme designed to transform big ideas into big business.
22nd February 2019
The Riverside Company, a global private equity firm, has made a significant investment in E&A Scheer, the largest global blender and vendor of premium rum in bulk. With origins dating back to 1712, Scheer specializes in sourcing and custom-blending to create high-quality, tailor-made rum blends. Scheer’s blending operation is located in Amsterdam, Netherlands, and aging facilities reside in Liverpool, United Kingdom, where its subsidiary the Main Rum Company (MRC) is located.
21st February 2019
UK-leading meal kit company, Gousto, has raised another £18m in equity funding, bringing the total raised since launch to £75m. Attracting new investment from global health influencer, Joe Wicks, along with all existing shareholders: MMC Ventures, Unilever Ventures; Hargreave Hale; BGF Ventures and Angel CoFund.
20th February 2019
Catering management software company Spoonfed is planning major expansion in the US, following £575,000 of development funding from Equity Gap.
Aimed specifically at contract catering firms and restaurants supplying catering to businesses, universities, hospitals and many other institutions, Spoonfed’s SaaS (Software as a Service) platform creates real efficiencies for caterers and provides a straightforward ordering system for their customers.
11th February 2019
Acceleris Capital investment Redag Crop Protection Ltd, a UK agrochemical discovery company, has sold its discovery and early development division to Globachem NV, retaining the lead assets for continued development to commercialisation.
With this new acquisition, Globachem continues its already fast-growing development. Globachem Discovery Ltd, the new name of the acquired company, will enhance and strengthen Globachem Group capabilities in Research and Development.
The partial sale will allow Redag to focus on the development of the two lead assets, a broad spectrum herbicide and a potato blight fungicide with a view to licensing them once further field trials and data packages have been created.