USA – California-based food technology startup Perfect Day has raised US$350 million in series D funding to enable it to expand its business operations.
The funding which will bring the startup’s total to US$750 million will be used to support current operations as well as create an “enterprise biology” arm of the company.
Some of the funds will also go towards Perfect Day’s affiliated CPG company, The Urgent Company which announced a new brand of animal-free dairy brand called Modern Kitchen.
According to the company, Modern Kitchen will initially roll out cheese spreads featuring Perfect Day’s animal-free proteins.
It will compliment Perfect Day’s current animal-free ice cream brand Brave Robot that currently has distribution in 5,000 grocery stores.
Perfect Day is the only company with animal-free dairy ingredients currently on the market, making its debut with ice cream in 2019.
The company makes its dairy proteins through precision fermentation, a process that involves encoding microbes with information to engineer a protein typically produced by an animal, and producing the protein in a fermentation tank.
Investors participating in the latest funding round include Temasek, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments), Horizons Ventures, Bob Iger, executive chairman and chairman of the board of The Walt Disney Company, and SK, Inc.
To support the company’s anticipated growth, Perfect Day has added several management-level positions during the past quarter.
TM Narayan has been named chief of business operations while Allison Fowler has joined the team as chief marketing officer.
Alex Brittain has assumed his new role as senior vice president of international and Chuck Thorn has been named vice president of finance.
Plans for the “enterprise biology” are also shaping up with the company already taking on ownership and operations of Utah State University’s Synthetic Biomanufacturing Facility (SBF), located on the university’s Innovation Campus in Logan, Utah.
The animal-free dairy maker said it’s using this facility for its “enterprise biology,” venture which is focused on providing development services to help startups scale their technology.
“We first got into the ingredient business because food companies, big and small, were eager to work with the ingredients we had successfully scaled,” said Perumal Gandhi, co-founder of Perfect Day.
“We’re standing up business models to be able to share our demonstrated capabilities in a way that maximizes upsides for all, yet ensures that Perfect Day remains at the forefront of our new industry.”
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