Singapore-incorporated Entobel Holding Pte Ltd, which makes insect protein as a feed ingredient, is raising $30 million in a Series B round of funding to finance the construction of a production facility in Vietnam.
International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, is proposing to invest $10 million in the round in the form of preferred equity, per its disclosure.
Entobel is looking to raise the capital for a 10,000 MT capacity plant in Dat Do Industrial Park in the Ba Ria – Vung Tau province of Vietnam.
Founded in 2013, Entobel commercially rears the Black Soldier Fly (BSF) insect species to produce insect protein as a feed ingredient, primarily for the aquaculture industry, as a sustainable replacement of fishmeal. The company also sells insect oil and insect frass that are by-products generated during the production of insect protein.
Entobel founders Gaetan Crielaard and Alexandre de Caters own more than 75% stake in the company. Other key shareholders who own more than a 5% stake in the company include Torsten Vogt and Harold de Walque.
“At the market level, IFC expects the investment to improve the competitiveness of the sector through strong demonstration and replication effects, largely at the primary production level,” IFC said in the disclosure.
In 2019, Entobel raised €1 million ($1.13 million) in funding when it was planning a new plant to expand its operations. In 2018, the company had raised $1.15 million in a seed funding round. The company has raised a total of $3.3 million so far, according to Crunchbase.
The agri feed space has been attracting increasing investor interest with sustainable production emerging as a dominant theme across the food value chain.
According to Market Watch, the global insect protein market value will increase from $83 million in 2019 to $385.6 million by the end of 2026, growing at a CAGR of 24.3% during 2021-2026.
In December last year, IFC had proposed a $90.6-million investment in Vietnamese animal feed and farming company Mavin Group. The World Bank’s investment arm had earlier also proposed to participate in the $180-million financing for Vietnamese animal and aqua feed producer Greenfeed Vietnam Corporation.
In other deals, Singapore-based alternative protein company INSEACT raised $1.3 million in a seed funding round led by a European family office while Singapore-based venture capital firm Visvires New Protein (VVNP) invested in a $125-million Series C round for French insect farming startup Ÿnsect.
The Trendlines Group, through its Agrifood Fund, invested in Insectta, an early-stage Singapore-based startup that focuses on the extraction of biomaterials from insects in May last year.