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쿠웨이트 투자 회사가 스타트업 배틀필드 퓨어 하베스트에 최대 1 억 달러 투입
  • 기사등록 2020-04-22 11:17:21
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Image by Nattanan Kanchanaprat from Pixabay

Pure Harvest Smart Farms, a startup developing technology-enhanced greenhouses for agricultural developments across the Middle East, has received a commitment of up to $100 million from Wafra, Kuwait’s national investment company.

The first fruits of that commitment are coming through in the form of a commitment from Wafra to lead Pure Harvest’s $20.6 million Series A financing, the company said.

Pure Harvest first hit the international investment stage as part of a cohort of companies selected to compete in TechCrunch’s Startup Battlefield MENA competition, conducted through a partnership with Facebook.

The multi-stage investment commitment, valued at over $100 million, comes from Wafra International Investment Company (a wholly owned subsidiary of The Public Institution for Social Security) and represents the largest commitment to a regional agricultural technology company in the Middle East.

As a result of the investment, Ghazi Al-Hajeri, the chief executive of Wafra, will join Pure Harvest’s Board of Directors, the company said.

Pure Harvest said that the new investment will be used to continue the development of controlled-environment agricultural facilities — like greenhouses — to cultivate pesticide-free fresh fruits and vegetables.

“The global need for innovation in agriculture has never been greater.  The recent COVID-19 crisis and resulting supply chain disruptions further highlight the need for sustainable local-for-local food production capacity, especially for fresh, nutrient-rich foods,” said Sky Kurtz, the founder and chief executive of Pure Harvest Smart Farms. “Together with structured debt financing that we are simultaneously arranging, we will invest Wafra’s funds in growth, key hires, enhancing our technology portfolio, and ultimately to deliver our solution across the region – including in Wafra’s home market of Kuwait.”

Smart agriculture will continue to be an important area for investment as the food supply chain comes under increasing stresses resulting from a changing climate. Desertification, drought, flooding and wide climatic shifts are putting more pressure on the global food chain, according to the United Nations.

In the U.S. that’s driven investments in companies like AppHarvest, Backyard Farms, Bright Farms, Lufa Farms, Plenty and Square Roots. Plenty alone has raised $401 million for its indoor agricultural cultivation system. In France, Agricool has over $38 million for its own indoor agriculture tech.

“Wafra’s investment comes at an exciting time and will allow Pure Harvest to achieve industrial economies of scale as the Company roles out its next generation of advanced greenhouse designs optimized for profitability and sustainability within the MENA region,” said David Scott, Pure Harvest’s chairman, in a statement. “This investment also demonstrates the caliber and far-sighted acumen of Wafra’s leadership, whose actions have placed their institution on the virtuous side of the irresistible macro trends driving explosive growth in technology-enabled agriculture in this region and beyond.”

 요약

중동 전역의 농업발전을 위한 기술향상형 온실을 개발하는 스타트업 퓨어 하베스트 스마트팜이 쿠웨이트의 국가투자회사인 와프라로부터 최대 1억달러의 다단계 투자 공약을 받았다. 

그 약속의 첫 결실은 퓨어 하베스트사의 2,060만 달러 시리즈 A 자금조달을 이끌겠다는 Wafra의 약속의 형태로 나타나고 있다고 회사측은 말했다.

변화하는 기후로 인해 식량 공급 체인이 증가하는 스트레스를 받기 때문에 스마트 농업은 계속해서 중요한 투자 분야가 될 것이다. 유엔에 따르면 사막화, 가뭄, 홍수와 광범위한 기후 변화는 전세계 식량 사슬에 더 많은 압력을 가하고 있다고 한다.

미국에서는 AppHarvest, Dadarf Farmes, Bright Farmes, Lufa Farmes, Fally, Square Roots, Plenty와 같은 회사에 투자를 유도한다. P실내 농업 재배 시스템 회사인 Plenty만이 4억 1천만 달러를 모금했다. 프랑스에서는 아그리쿨이 자체 실내 농업기술로 3,800만 달러 이상을 보유하고 있다.

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  • 기사등록 2020-04-22 11:17:21
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