Next Gen Foods, based in Singapore and known for its vegan chicken brand TiNDLE, just raised $100 million. According to the company, this is the largest Series A capital round ever raised by a plant-based meat company. Andre Menezes, a Brazilian-born poultry exporter and food industry veteran, and Timo Recker, a German native whose family firm created schnitzel and other meat products for three generations, founded Next Gen Foods in 2020. The two met in a business incubator and founded the company out of a common desire to minimize humanity’s dependency on animal agriculture, beginning with chicken.
TiNDLE, the company’s flagship product named after 19th-century Irish physicist John Tyndall, is designed to replicate chicken in a variety of dishes ranging from schnitzel to satay. TiNDLE is made with only nine ingredients, including a blend of soy and wheat gluten, as well as “lipi,” a plant-based lipid that gives the food its unctuousness. TiNDLE, unlike chicken, is cholesterol-free and antibiotic-free, as well as being higher in protein and fiber than its animal-derived equivalent. While Next Gen Foods has only been around for a few years, TiNDLE has already established itself in restaurants in Amsterdam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau, Kuala Lumpur, and the United Arab Emirates.
“In less than a year, we’ve been able to bring our flagship product, TiNDLE, to over 200 restaurants across three continents. This year, our plan is to continue that expansion and deliver on our promise that saving the planet can be simple and delicious with a great-tasting product like TiNDLE… We are grateful to have a group of both mission aligned and long-term global investors supporting us during such a critical phase for the company—bringing their expertise and visionary leadership,” stated Rohit Bhattacharya, Chief Financial Officer at Next Gen Foods.
Latest investors include Singapore-based global investment fund DBI, Jakarta-based venture capital firm Alpha JWC Ventures, and Sir Paul McCartney’s MPL Ventures in the new investment, which expands on a previous $30 million seed round. Temasek, Global Fund GGV Capital, K3 Ventures, and Bits x Bites are all returning investors from earlier rounds.
TiNDLE Arrives In The United States
Next Gen Foods will use the new capital to expand TiNDLE into major markets such as Europe and the United States. TiNDLE will begin its US launch in select restaurants this week, a strategy the company used to promote its vegan chicken to US consumers through the eyes of professional chefs. In New York City, the brand teamed up with celebrity chef Chad Rosenthal and famed café The Grey Dog to offer vegan chicken tastes via a food truck that will stop in Brooklyn and Manhattan on February 16 and 17, respectively. TiNDLE’s US restaurant development will continue after its launch in New York City, with locations in Miami, Florida, San Francisco, California, and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. FoodServiceDirect.com, an online marketplace, also sells the company’s chicken to US foodservice operators.
“The overall response to TiNDLE from both chefs and consumers over the past 10 months has blown us away, and we’re looking forward to bringing it next to two of the biggest markets for chicken: the United States and Europe… Thanks to our lineup of fantastic investors, we are able to continue expanding the business at a rapid rate—and meet the urgent needs of creating a more sustainable food system for our planet,” Menezes stated.
The company will also utilize its new capital to create a state-of-the-art research center in Singapore this year, where it will develop new product lines such as plant-based meat, fish-free seafood, and dairy alternatives, as well as new TiNDLE vegan chicken variants. TiNDLE will be available in the United Kingdom and Germany in 2022, in addition to the United States.
Source: “POULTRY INDUSTRY VETERANS RAISE $100 MILLION TO GIVE THEIR VEGAN CHICKEN BRAND WINGS” by VegNews