Tuesday, September 26, 2023

NRMA Backs VC’s $50 Million Agritech Fund

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Automotive Association the NRMA is a cornerstone investor in a new agrifood tech fund that supports startups focused on feeding the world.

Mandalay Venture Partners’ sustainability-focused agriculture and food technology venture fund Mandalay Fund I now has more than $21 million in first-closure commitments, with a final target of $50 million.

NOVONIX Co-Founder Phillip St Baker and PCS Capital CEO Angus Cameron Also Committed Investments

Mandalay Ventures, managing partner Al Fullerton, said the fund will look at early stage startups and growth in areas ranging from carbon sequestration to farm efficiency, supply chain automation, autonomous vehicles, future food, e-commerce and eGrocery. platforms.

“Our mission is to invest in agtech and foodtech companies that are able to sustainably and efficiently feed the growing world population,” he said.

“Australia’s agricultural industry is expected to be worth more than $100 billion by 2030 and significant investment in innovation, technology and efficiency is needed for Australians to lead this market sustainably.”

Fullerton said Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and sustainability will be on Mandalay’s investment thesis and agenda.

“This is an area that is not only badly needed to secure the future of our food supply, but it is also very recognizable. We all eat. We all get it,” he says.

“Australians are known for agriculture and innovation, so it’s an industry we feel good about. The fact that such a large and respected Australian institution like NRMA has come out so early to support us fuels the need and confidence in this growing industry.”

NRMA Head of Investments Ainsley Lee was impressed with the track record of the management team and their approach to being closely involved with and supporting the portfolio companies.

“More broadly, we have a strong focus on investing in areas of impact while helping to address sustainability, especially if we can support regional and rural parts of Australia,” he said.

The Mandalay team has been jointly involved in supporting more than 50 early stage investments, including TrademarkVision and Lyre’s for non-alcoholic beverages, as well as managing multiple early stage funds. Mark Gustowski, Philippe Ceulen and Timothy Hui managed external startup investments for the Queensland University of Technology before joining forces with Fullerton to create Mandalay.

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