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June 2, 2021updated 03 Jun 2021 10:15am

Fresh investment in Chile plant-based firm NotCo

Chile plant-meat and dairy business NotCo has accepted more investment as it looks to expand its presence in the US foodservice market.

New York fund Enlightened Hospitality Investments has backed NotCo. Financial terms were not disclosed. NotCo said EHI’s investment “was made at a higher valuation versus the last round” and added it was “in line with the company’s expectation of getting to a US$1bn valuation by the end of 2021”.

EHI’s investment takes the pot ploughed into NotCo to US$130m. Over the last two years, the company, set up in 2015, has attracted investment from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Future Positive, a US investment fund of Biz Stone, the co-founder of Twitter.

In a statement, NotCo described EHI’s backing as “strategic” and would help its “ability to expand into the US and NYC foodservice market”. NotCo’s customers in Latin America include Burger King and Papa John’s.

Danny Meyer, the founder of US fast-casual restaurant chain Shake Shack, is a partner in EHI. The fund’s investments include US chickpea pasta firm Banza.

NotCo founder and CEO Matias Muchnick said: “Our goal is to accelerate rapid advancement of science-driven plant-based alternatives that consumers will readily adopt, and EHI’s and Danny’s vast industry expertise will help solidify mainstream validation of our technology, especially within foodservice.”

NotCo’s inaugural product was a plant-based alternative to mayonnaise, Not Mayo, which is made from garbanzo beans. It has since expanded the portfolio into NotMilk, NotBurger, NotIceCream and NotMayo in Brazil, Argentina and Chile.

The company made its US bow last November with the launch of NotMilk.

In March last year, NotCo closed its manufacturing facility in Chile after opting to outsource production. NotCo said at the time the decision to outsource meant its products could get to market quicker and freed up resources to focus on new product development.

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