Pea-Based Milk Maker Ripple Foods Raises $60 Million to Expand
(Bloomberg) -- Ripple Foods, a maker of pea-based dairy products, raised $60 million to fund expansion and help it capitalize on growing consumer demand for plant-based foods.
The Series E round was led by Rage Capital, Ajax Strategies and S2G Ventures, and also included OurCrowd, Fall Line Capital and Tao Capital Partners. Ripple declined to provide a valuation but said it was significantly higher than in previous rounds. According to data provider PitchBook, the company was valued at $357 million last month, though the company disputed that figure without providing additional details.
Ripple plans to explore new categories such as soft-serve ice cream, as well as broaden distribution channels and expand its global presence, Chief Executive Officer Laura Flanagan said in an interview. The Berkeley, California-based company’s products, currently sold in retailers across the U.S. and Canada, will soon be available in club stores, convenience marts and foodservice channels, she said.
As consumers become more aware of the environmental impact of meat and dairy production, substitutes for both are proliferating. The alternative dairy market is more mature than the faux-meat category, but it could still nearly triple to about $62 billion by 2030, according to a recent analysis from Bloomberg Intelligence.
Consumer awareness of the environmental aspect “is still emerging,” strengthening the market’s growth prospects, Flanagan said. She also said that pea-based milk, in particular, has an advantage over some competing products because its protein content is on par with that of dairy milk.
The company plans to use some of the new funds to increase brand awareness, the CEO said. Its first television advertisement will air in the coming months.
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