Hong Kong-based Avant closes seed round, backed by Chairman of the world’s largest responsible tilapia producer, fueling its first commercial product launch in 2021
Hong Kong, China - Cultivated meat biotechnology start-up Avant today announced it has closed a US$3.1 million seed funding round to fuel R&D and commercialization of its cultivated fish products. The funding round saw participation from prominent Greater China investors including China Venture Capital, AngelHub, and ParticleX, as well as western alternative protein investors Lever VC, CPT Capital, Loyal VC, Artesian, and 208 Seed Ventures. Strategic food investors PTG Food, a consortium of fast-growing and progressive food businesses across Asia Pacific with a global reach, and Markus Haefeli, Chairman of Regal Springs, the world’s largest responsible tilapia producer, also participated in the round.
“Avant is pleased to be partnering with strategic investors who can support us with manufacturing know-how, customer relationships, and ongoing support,” said Carrie Chan, Co-founder and CEO, Avant. “We will accelerate our work with the sustainable seafood and functional protein industries to accelerate adoption of our products into existing global supply chains.”
The financing will accelerate Avant’s research and development to continue lowering production costs and to bring the company’s products to market in 2021. Avant is the first cultivated meat biotechnology company in China and the only cultivated fish company in Asia. Its patent-pending proprietary technology produces animal-free proteins for food, skincare, and other functional applications in a cost-effective, scalable and fully contained bioprocess, directly from fish cells.
Commenting on the fundraising round:
Wang Yijun, CEO, China Venture Capital, one of China’s oldest and leading VC funds with over US$2.3bn in assets, said: “In accordance with China’s 14th Five-Year Plan, we will continue to invest in companies with agricultural technology that secure supply chains and boost self-sufficiency in food production.”
Karen Contet, Co-founder and CEO, AngelHub, Hong Kong’s first SFC licensed startup investment platform, noted: “AngelHub is proud to invest in Avant’s round. Avant’s food demos manifested how deep tech can enable sustainability initiatives. We see growing appetite for consuming and investing in cultivated meat among our investors.”
Allan MacDonald, Managing Director, PTG Food, a consortium of fast-growing and progressive food businesses across Asia Pacific with a global reach, commented: “We are very excited with this venture which is fully aligned to our company’s values and mission, and it gives us a great opportunity to further support and champion the development of the sustainable global food systems and make a difference.”
Markus Haefeli, Chairman, Regal Springs, the world’s largest responsible tilapia producer, remarked: “Avant’s capabilities to cultivate animal proteins from a fully traceable system will offer additional assurance to food and skincare brands demanding the highest level of functionality, safety, and accountability.”
Research firm MarketsandMarkets projects the global cultivated meat market will be valued at US$214 million by 2025, growing to US$593 million by 2032. This growth will be fueled by innovation in animal protein cultivation, combined with the soaring interest in animal welfare, environmental sustainability, and safe and diversified protein supply chains.
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Avant is the first cultivated meat biotechnology company in China. Its patent-pending proprietary technology platform produces animal-free fish proteins for food, skincare, and other functional applications in a cost-effective and fully traceable bioprocess, directly from fish cells. Avant aims to be a global technology leader in producing functional, safe, and sustainable cultivated marine products in a fully contained environment. It has been named to Clean Tech Group’s 2020 APAC 25 list of most innovative sustainable companies, and featured in Forbes, The Telegraph, South China Morning Post, and CCTV. Avant was founded in 2018 and is based in Hong Kong Science Park. For more information, please visit www.avantmeats.com.