Agrisoma Biosciences, a Quebec-based developer of an agricultural feedstock, has secured C$15.4 million ($11.5 million, € 10.9 million) in Series B funding from a group of investors including Groupe Lune Rouge, BDC Venture Capital and Cycle Capital Management.
The company develops and sells seeds to grow brassica carinata, a non-food oilseed crop that typically grows in arid regions and be used as feedstock for both bio jet fuels and as a component of animal feed. Agrisoma’s carinata is sold under the Resonance brand and is currently available in Canada, the US, Europe and South America.
Steven Fabijanski, Agrisoma’s president and chief executive officer, said in a statement that the funding will help develop and execute a commercialization program in South America and an effort to promote the use of oils derived from carinata in animal feed.
“Agrisoma represents the future of the aviation industry,” added Andree-Lise Methot, founder and managing partner of Cycle Capital Management. “By growing carinata and producing oil for bio jet fuel, it demonstrates how a technology-based company can have a global impact by reducing GHG emissions in an industry known for its significant carbon footprint.”
Methot told Agri Investor that Cycle’s investment fits within the firm’s focus on the intellectual property (IP) aspects of clean technologies because Agrisoma owns IP related to carinata seeds. In addition, she said the fact that the crop can grow in difficult climates means that its dissemination can have a positive impact on farmers in the developing world.
Methot added that Agrisoma is in already talks with an unnamed large European oil company to supply it with carinata and that over the long-term, the crop will compete with palm oil as a more sustainable feedstock for biofuels.
Cycle is a venture capital firm with $231 million in assets under management based in Montreal. Capital for the investment in Agrisoma came from its $109 million Cycle Capital Fund II and its other agriculture-related investments include soil health-focused Inocucor and Lufa Farms, a Montreal-based urban agriculture company.