The funding marks the largest single round to date for an indoor farming company, according to Plenty, and was led by new investors One Madison Group and JS Capital with participation from strategic partner Walmart and existing investor SoftBank Vision Fund 1.
Plenty, which is headquartered in San Francisco with a research facility in Wyoming and a vertical farm in Compton, Calif., said it will use the funds to leverage its technology platform to sell its multi-crop farms directly to partners such as global retailer Walmart.
As part of the funding announcement, Walmart signed a long-term commercial agreement with Plenty allowing the retailer to source Plenty's leafy greens directly from its Compton facility to all of its California store locations in 2022.
“Having Walmart, as one of the world’s largest retailers, partner with us demonstrates the rising importance of indoor agriculture to the future of fresh and their belief in Plenty’s unique technology solution," said Arama Kukutai, Plenty CEO.
Plenty's indoor farming architecture operates as a vertical, scalable modular system, which uses 1% of the land required by traditional field farming while being able to improve yields by 150 to 350 times per acre. The farming system is capable of growing multiple pesticide-free crops on one platform year-round without facing land and environmental constraints.
“The indoor farming sector is at an exciting inflection point, poised to reach its full potential as a new asset class that addresses the significant need to provide access to fresh, nutritious food year round, even in geographies where traditional farming is difficult,” commented Omar Asali, chairman and CEO of One Madison Group.
“Plenty has truly ‘cracked the code’ on the technology and economics of indoor farming. It has developed an innovative and scalable model that can deliver fresh, sustainable produce to retailers, growers and governments anywhere in the world.”
Andrew Zloto, director at SoftBank Investment Advisers and Plenty board member, added: “With support from leading retailers and growers and a new focus on selling farms directly to partners, we believe that Plenty is at a critical inflection point that will have a lasting impact on the entire industry. We’ve been a long-term partner to Plenty and are delighted to continue to support them as they continue to innovate and rewrite the playbook for indoor growing.”