Shiok Meats raises $3m in bridge funding to set up first manufacturing plant in Singapore

Sandhya Sriram, CEO & co-founder of Shiok Meats.

Singapore-based alternative proteins startup Shiok Meats has raised $3 million in a bridge financing round, led by Agronomics, a UK-based alternative meat investor; VegInvest, a US-based slaughter-free investment firm; Impact Venture, a UK-based angel fund and UAE’s Mindshift Capital Fund.

The latest round takes Shiok Meats’ total funding to $7.6 million to date.

According to Shiok Meats, the fresh proceeds will be used to set up its first manufacturing plant in Singapore, where it will spend the next two to three years developing and commercialising stem-cell cultivated crustacean meat. It is also on track to close its Series A round by the end of 2020.

Shiok Meats’s bridge financing comes about a year after it raised its $4.6-million seed round, one of the largest at the time by an Asian foodtech startup. Its seed round was led by Henry Soesanto, CEO of Monde Nissin and joined by Y Combinator, Wild Earth CEO and co-founder, Ryan Bethencourt, AiiM Partners, Big Idea Ventures, Aera VC, Beyond Impact Advisors, Boom Capital, Entrepreneur First and others.

According to Shiok, the company is focusing on creating more prototypes for its lab-grown shrimp meat and has plans to sell its first cell-based shrimp product in Singapore by 2021. It is also eyeing market expansion into Hong Kong, India and Australia.

One of Shiok’s key objectives is also lowering the cost of production of lab-grown shrimp, which remains extremely high as a new and novel product. One lab-grown shrimp product produced by Shiok costs a hefty $300 to produce. Shiok wants to cut this down to $50 per kilogramme by 2021 to make its product more commercially viable.

Founded in August 2018, Shiok Meats was founded by Sandhya Sriram and Ka Yi Ling, two former stem cell scientists from Singapore’s A*STAR institute. The company taps stem cell technology to reproduce animal parts for human consumption. It targets crustaceans – shrimps in particular, which alone represents a $40-billion global industry.

The goal is to develop a commercially available and affordable cell-based seafood protein that can replace current food sources. The global shrimp industry is one of the dirtiest in the world, marred by poor hygiene and ethical standards.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.