AppHarvest, the Kentucky-based agricultural technology greenhouse startup led by Endeavor Entrepreneur Jonathan Webb, announced the closing of their monumental Series C round in August, raising $28 million, bringing the total raised for the company over the last two years to $150 million. The fund was led by J.D. Vance’s Narya Capital, which focuses on “scientifically complicated” startups. The investment also saw notable contributions from Jeff Ubben and James Murdoch, and participation from Endeavor’s innovative venture capital fund, Catalyst.
Selected into the Endeavor network in 2019 at the 90th International Selection Panel (ISP) in Atlanta, GA, AppHarvest is leading a paradigm shift in American agriculture that will dramatically increase output per acre and reduce the Unites States’ reliance on fresh produce imports while shrinking the environmental costs of farming. The company is currently building one of North America’s largest greenhouses, a 2.76 million square foot facility in Morehead, Kentucky that will be the first in a series of massive indoor farms – producing tomatoes year-round using water-efficient, chemical-free, hydroponic growing techniques.
AppHarvest is planning yet another, larger fundraising round later this year, and will use the funding to hire employees for the new facility in Morehead, which will have 300 workers when it opens in the fall. This current Series C raise follows a successful $11M investment raise in early 2020. The company has also added Martha Stewart, Impossible Foods Chief Financial Officer David Lee and author J.D. Vance to its board of directors in conjunction with the fundraising round.
Just last week, Webb spoke with Forbes Magazine about agriculture technology as part of the economic future of Middle America. AppHarvest positions the eastern region of Kentucky as an ideal location for indoor fruit and vegetable greenhouses, as their products can reach 70% of the American population in a single day’s drive.
“There is a real potential that over the next 10 to 15 years, we see thousands and thousands of acres of high tech production built, bringing farms up to date with infrastructure and technology,” Webb said to Forbes. “For the amount of people in this country who don’t really have access to healthy foods, I think this will go a long way into trying to solve that.”
Read more about AppHarvest’s growth and their successful Series C here.
AppHarvest is building some of America’s largest greenhouses, combining conventional agricultural techniques with today’s technology to grow non-GMO, chemical-free produce to be sold to the top 25 U.S. grocers. The company has developed a unique system to reduce water usage by 90% compared to typical farms, as a 10-acre, on-site rainwater retention pond pairs with sophisticated circular irrigation systems. The system also eliminates agricultural runoff entirely. By locating within Appalachia, AppHarvest also benefits from being less than a day’s drive to 70% of the U.S. population. That lowers diesel use in transportation costs by 80%, allowing the company’s fresher produce to compete against low-cost foreign imports. To learn more, visit their website.
About Narya Capital
Narya Capital Management, LLC is a thesis-driven, early-stage venture capital firm based in Ohio. Their LPs include some of the most successful investors, entrepreneurs, innovators and institutions in the world. Narya invests long term capital in people who use technology to solve significant challenges. Learn more here.
About Endeavor Catalyst
Endeavor Catalyst is the innovative co-investment fund of Endeavor, set up to invest exclusively in Endeavor Entrepreneur-led companies and to sustain Endeavor’s long-term operations in a mission-aligned way. Since launching in January 2012, Endeavor Catalyst has raised over $250M in capital, and invested in more than 100 Endeavor companies in over 25 markets. To date, Endeavor Catalyst has co-invested alongside a number of leading venture capital and growth equity funds, including Accel Partners, General Atlantic, NEA, Sequoia Capital and Tiger Global. Investments include Globant (NYSE: GLOB) in Argentina, Yemeksepeti.com (acquired by Delivery Hero) in Turkey, and dr. consulta in Brazil. Learn more here.