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Astanor Ventures leads €45m investment round for v2Food

Astanor partner Hendrik Van Asbroeck says the investment marks ‘the beginning of a strategic partnership to help v2Food expand into the European market.’

Astanor Ventures has led a €45 million Series B extension round for Australian plant-based meat start-up v2Food, which counts Australia’s national science agency CSIRO as one of its founding shareholders.

The company secured a A$77 million ($57 million; €48 million) Series B in October 2020 and is supported by regional investors such as Temasek, ABC World Asia, China Renaissance and Sequoia Capital China.

V2Food’s product range includes burger patties, sausages, mince and bolognaise sauce. Founder and CEO Nick Hazell declined to share production capacity and annual revenue data with affiliate title Agri Investor, but said the business is “seeing strong growth in Australia across retail and food service channels despite the challenges faced by the hospitality industry throughout the current climate.”

“The biggest opportunity to achieve our sustainability mission and generate revenue comes from markets where there is much higher demand for protein. We have accelerated our product development to satisfy these demands and are beginning to see strong results with initial exports in the early launch stages of our Asian market expansion,” said Hazell.

Belgium-based Astanor Ventures deployed capital from its debut fund, which closed on $325 million in November. The impact vehicle is focused on the food and agtech space and has invested in 20 companies including French insect protein start-up Ynsect, plant-based seafood company Kuleana and plant-based dairy company Stockled Dreamery.

One of the reasons Astanor has invested into v2Food is to help the Australian company make its market entry into Europe.

“Astanor’s investment marks the beginning of a strategic partnership to help v2Food expand into the European market,” Astanor Ventures partner Hendrik Van Asbroeck told Agri Investor.

“As Europe’s largest agrifood tech investor, Astanor is ideally placed to accompany v2Food through this transition from advising on strategy to approach local consumers, helping understand local regulations and providing connections with Astanor’s extensive industry network across Europe.”

Van Asbroeck added that the company’s position as a “sustainable, healthy, eco-friendly alternative to meat” ensures it aligns with the fund’s impact goals.

“Their technology and production process allow them to expand into new markets quickly, while maintaining high standards of quality and minimal environmental footprint. Their impact will scale exponentially as their products are adopted into markets around the world,” said Van Asbroeck.