Next Gen, a food-technology startup producing and commercialising plant-based meat products, has launched in Singapore with a seed funding of $2.2 million, according to an announcement.
The names of investors in this funding round were not disclosed.
Next Gen is founded by Timo Recker, former CEO of German plant-based meat company LikeMeat (acquired by global plant-based food company LIVEKINDLY Collective earlier this year), and Andre Menezes, previously the general manager of Country Foods Singapore, where he was involved in making Impossible Foods a household name in Singapore.
Next Gen has established its headquarters, leadership team and research and development (R&D) centre in Singapore. The food-tech startup is looking to expand to China, US and Europe over the next three years.
The company aims to serve 9,000 restaurants and target to launch the consumer brand within the next six months.
According to Recker, the demand for plant-based meat products has exploded in the last few years, with over $1.5 billion invested in the first seven months of 2020, more than double 2019’s investment of $534 million.
The global plant-based protein segment is expected to reach $85 billion by 2030, according to UBS. Asia will see significant growth according to Technavio, projected to reach an estimated market value of $12.75 billion by 2030.
“We are preparing to onboard external investors in a Series A financing round in 2021. Those funds will drive our global expansion, technology and R&D,” said Recker.
The company said that Singapore offers a strong infrastructure to support food technology innovations like alternative protein. Therefore, it has chosen Singapore as its global headquarters for its innovation ecosystem.
Last year, Temasek, Enterprise SG backed a new foodtech fund seeking to raise $100 million. Called Big Idea Ventures, it is the latest to join the protein fund club. For the uninitiated, protein funds invest in companies engaged in sustainable or ‘green’ protein products, concepts, technologies or services.