KANSAS CITY, Mo.—February 9, 2017— TechAccel and Iowa Corn Opportunities today announced separate investments in Agrivida Inc., a St. Louis-based agriculture technology company focused on animal nutrition.
These strategic investments come on the heels of Agrivida’s announcement of a $20.4M Series E financing round completed in September 2016. Terms of TechAccel and Iowa Corn Opportunities investments were not disclosed.
“We see Agrivida and its technology as a great new platform for using corn as a cost-competitive factory for a wide variety of products,” said Brian Jones, Chief Operating Officer of the Iowa Corn Growers Association, parent company of Iowa Corn Opportunities.
“Agrivida is poised to create a disruption across enzyme manufacturing and animal nutrition,” said Michael Helmstetter, Ph.D., President and CEO of TechAccel, a venture and technology development firm. “Consistent with the TechAccel business model, we are excited to take a key role in developing the science to expand the potential of Agrivida’s technology.”
Agrivida has a patented technology using protein expression in grain to simplify the process of enzyme production. The company is commercializing its patented GRAINZYME® feed additive enzymes for use with poultry, swine, dairy and beef cattle.
“TechAccel and Iowa Corn Opportunities are partners with the strategic commitment to advance the Agrivida vision,” said Dan Meagher, President and CEO of Agrivida. “Our technology promises improved production efficiency of major food segments, from plants to meat, milk and eggs.”
TechAccel is a venture and technology development company in agriculture and animal health sectors that invests in or acquires new technology and funds science advancement programs with research university partners to assist in commercialization.
The Iowa Corn Growers Association is a 7,500-member agricultural association with a long tradition of supporting Iowa corn farmers in lobbying and agricultural development. The association operates a wholly owned subsidiary, Iowa Corn Opportunities, as an equity fund to make strategic investments to benefit Iowa’s corn growers.
The two firms join a roster of current investors including the University of Texas Investment Management Company, ARCH Venture Partners, Cultivian Sandbox, Middleland Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Northgate Capital.
About Iowa Corn Opportunities
Iowa Corn Opportunities, LLC (ICO) is a limited liability company owned by the Iowa Corn Growers Association® (ICGA). ICO operates as an equity fund set up to assist new and growing companies that are developing businesses that are important to the corn industry. For more information visit, www.iowacornopportunities.com.
TechAccel, LLC, was founded in 2014 as a first-of-its-kind venture and technology development company in the agriculture, animal health and food sectors. TechAccel sources, invests in and acquires early-stage innovations. Through collaborations with universities and research institutions, TechAccel conducts advancement and de-risking research and development to ready technologies for commercialization. For more information, visit www.TechAccel.net or follow @Tech_Accel.
Committed to using technology to improve the production of food for a growing global population, Agrivida scientists are experts in biochemistry, plant biology, molecular biology, agriculture, and nutrition. Founded in 2004 by scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who were focused on ways to improve the manufacture and use of enzymes, the company has been granted 33 patents, with more than 85 pending. The company’s innovative solutions have resulted in several research grants from both the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Energy. Additional information on the company can be found at www.agrivida.com.