San Francisco-based Plenty, a leading field-scale indoor farming startup remaking the global food system, said it raised a $200 million Series B funding round led by the SoftBank Vision Fund, making it the largest agriculture technology investment in history. Louis M. Bacon, founder of Moore Capital Management LP, and existing investors including Eric Schmidt’s Innovation Endeavors, Bezos Expeditions, DCM, Data Collective and Finistere, also participated in this funding round.
Plenty is using proven plant science and patented technologies to build a new kind of indoor farm that uses cutting-edge LED lighting, micro-sensor technology, and big data processing to deliver higher-quality produce for pricing as good or better than what consumers pay today. The world has run out of economically viable, arable land for many fresh fruit and vegetable crops. This investment will support building out Plenty’s global, hyper-yield farm network and support its mission of solving the increasingly critical need to make fresh produce available and affordable for people everywhere.
“Fruits and vegetables grown conventionally spend days, weeks, and thousands of miles on freeways and in storage, keeping us all from what we crave and deserve — food as irresistible and nutritious as what we used to eat out of our grandparents’ gardens,” said Matt Barnard, CEO and co-founder of Plenty. “The world is out of land in the places it’s most economical to grow these crops. After a decade of development driven by one of our founders, our technology is uniquely capable of growing hyper-organic food with no pesticides nor GMOs while cutting water consumption by 99 percent, making locally-grown produce possible anywhere. We’re now ready to build out our farm network and serve communities around the globe.”
“By combining technology with optimal agriculture methods, Plenty is working to make ultra-fresh, nutrient-rich food accessible to everyone in an always-local way that minimizes wastage from transport,” said Masayoshi Son, Chairman & CEO of SoftBank Group Corp. “We believe that Plenty’s team will remake the current food system to improve people’s quality of life.”
SoftBank Vision’s Managing Director, Jeffrey Housenbold, will join Plenty’s Board of Directors.
Plenty’s farms, which the Company plans to build near the world’s major population centers, will deliver industry-leading yields of the freshest, best-tasting local produce that’s completely GMO- and pesticide-free, all while transitioning agriculture to a predictable and perpetual model. Plenty farms maintain a perfect growing environment, use one percent of the water and a tiny fraction of the land of conventional agriculture, while delivering produce to local grocery shelves within hours of harvest.