Building on the success of its first fund, Capagro has announced the launch of a second fund of 200 million euros to support the growth of the most promising start-ups in the European agtech and foodtech sectors. 

Five years after closing the first European venture capital fund dedicated to AgTech and FoodTech, Capagro is announcing the launch of a successor fund: Capagro Agri-Food Innovation Fund II (Capagro II). The aim of this fund is to support the growth of the most promising European startups in AgTech and FoodTech, for a more sustainable agriculture and healthy food, with an initial investment in the startup Cuure, a European leader in personalized nutrition and health operating on the promising market of food supplements.

This new 200-million-euro fund has already brought together the following investors with the sectoral experts of Capagro: Avril Group, LSDH, Terrena, Bel Group, Crédit Agricole Group (IDIA) and Bpifrance. It has also welcomed the agricultural cooperative group Euralis, and is opening its doors to other institutional and industrial investors and family offices for the current round of fund-raising.

Capagro II is targeting high-potential growing startups that champion innovative projects for sustainable agriculture and healthy food in the AgriFoodTech sector. The fund will principally act as lead or co-lead via initial sums of between 3 and 10 million euros invested in the capital of about fifteen predominantly European companies.

Like its predecessor, the new fund will cover the entire value chain of the agri-food sector, from farm to fork, with an “ecosystemic” approach that integrates the planet, humans and animals. The key sectors for Capagro II are bio-intrants, robotics, specialty ingredients, innovative packaging, alternative proteins, personalized nutrition, new distribution channels and promising emerging sectors, such as “carbon farming”.

For Tom Espiard-Cignaco, President & Managing Director of Capagro: “The current context reminds us of the urgency of meeting the climate, food, health, social and economic challenges impacting agriculture and food. Innovation in European AgriFoodTech is already providing practical answers to these challenges but also needs financial support at a level proportionate to its potential.

Supplying a flow of capital into these dynamic companies is not only a means of meeting these challenges but also an opportunity to nurture new European champions in AgriFoodTech. By supporting these companies as they scale up and accelerate their growth, this new fund is addressing promising young companies that generate sustainable innovations able to bring deep-rooted transformations to the agriculture and food sectors.”

For Anne-Valérie Bach, Managing Director of Capagro: “As a catalyst for innovation in the agri-food ecosystem, Capagro draws on a proprietary open innovation platform that not only favors the emergence of champions but also facilitates the adoption of innovations by our partner investors, which include agricultural cooperatives and major food industry groups.

This unique positioning opens the way for three-fold value creation in the domains of finance (with optimization of our risk/reward profile), strategy (via the synergies generated between the companies in the portfolio and the investors) and impact (by supporting companies having their core activity in tackling the current environmental and health challenges).

Capagro has already helped to create 560 jobs in the sector through this original approach, contributed to achieving more than three-fold increases in the turnover of the supported companies and has produced a knock-on effect among third-party investors, generating more than 4 times the sum invested by Capagro.”

The launch of Capagro II is taking place in a promising context, marked by high growth in investments in 2021-2022. In 2021, almost 52 billion US dollars were invested in global AgriFoodTech [1], up 85 % compared to 2020. In Europe, during the same period, 9.2 billion US dollars were invested in AgriFoodTech, representing almost 20% of the global market [2]. Global AgriFoodTech includes 55 unicorns [3], of which 25 are European.

Success of the Capagro I fund

Launched in April 2014, the predecessor fund, Capagro I, the pioneering European venture capital fund in AgTech and FoodTech, highlighted the dynamic pace of innovation in the agri-food sector in France and Europe and the need for young companies and startups in the sector to find the financial partners best able to help them sustain their growth.

Between 2014 and 2022, with a total fund of 124 million euros, Capagro I mobilized 13 leading industrial groups and financial institutions, established a portfolio of 13 French and European startups in the sectors of robotics and agricultural equipment (Naïo Technologies, Ecorobotix, BoMill), agricultural e-procurement (Agriconomie), biosourced materials (CelluComp), personalized nutrition (Yooji, Nick’s), alternative proteins (La Vie), e-commerce (Japhy, La Belle Vie, Colvin), indoor farming (CleanGreens) and food traceability (eProvenance).

Hear from Tom Espiard-Cignaco, President & Managing Director, at CAPAGRO on Tuesday September 20 at World Agri-Tech London!