Saudi's Red Sea Farms raises $16m pre-series A funding round
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Saudi’s Red Sea Farms raises $16m pre-series A funding round

Saudi’s Red Sea Farms raises $16m pre-series A funding round

Initial investor group includes Aramco venture Wa’ed, the Future Investment Initiative Institute and KAUST from Saudi Arabia, as well as UAE-based Global Ventures

Gulf Business

Red Sea Farms, a Saudi Arabian agtech business has raised $16m in its pre-series A investment round from Saudi, UAE and US investors.

An initial investment of $10m came from a group of Saudi and UAE investors including the Aramco venture Wa’ed, the Saudi government-owned Future Investment Initiative Institute, KAUST and Global Ventures, a UAE venture capital group.

Interest was subsequently received from AppHarvest and Bonaventure, investors from the US, who invested the remaining $6m. AppHarvest is an applied technology company building some of the world’s largest indoor farms in Appalachia. The company is addressing key issues including improving access for all to nutritious food, farming more sustainably, building a home-grown food supply, and increasing investment in Appalachia. It uses recycled rainwater in their greenhouses, in contrast to Red Sea farms’ focus on solar and salt-water growing systems that can be easily scaled in marginal agriculture climates such as the Middle East. Meanwhile, Bonaventure invests in companies with a strong initial product-market fit and a clear trajectory for developing sustainable competitive advantages, a statement said.

The increased investment aims to accelerates the company’s ability to expand their Saudi and Middle East operations as well as explore growth opportunities in the US.

Ryan Lefers, chief executive officer of Red Sea Farms, said: “Red Sea Farms is thrilled to have substantially exceeded its target for the current funding round. We look forward to working closely with our investors and our Red Sea Farms team to accelerate plans to roll out our technology in Saudi, the Middle East and North America.”

Potential investors are exploring opportunities to be part of Red Sea Farms’ next round of fundraising during 2022, reflecting the growing trend for investing in sustainable projects, the statement added.

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