Anterra Capital has closed its second food and agriculture technology fund on $260 million, as it eclipsed its original $230 million hard-cap.
The Amsterdam and Boston-based firm launched Anterra FA Ventures II in February 2021 and by May, it had hit its $175 million target for the vehicle and was oversubscribed following the extension of the hard-cap, managing partner Adam Anders told to Agri Investor.
Investors into the fund include Fidelity-backed Eight Road Ventures, Rabo Investments, Novo Holdings, Tattarang, sovereign wealth funds, family offices and a large UK pension, according to Anders.
“The final balance of LPs is a combination of institutional entrepreneurs that are actually just believers in the power of technology for good, or just believers in the power of technology and with food and agriculture being the last big chunk of GDP to be disrupted, they think it is the right place to put their energy and their dollars,” Anders said.
He added that the fundraise benefited from the momentum created by covid-19 among investors and stakeholders to find solutions to food production constraints, as well as the growing desire to support more sustainable agricultural practices.
“A lot of people are also thinking more about the nutrition of their foods, not just the climate footprint or their calorie intake, but the concept of food as health as opposed to necessarily medicine as the solution. We also saw a bit of an opening to the role of biotech because so many people are surviving on a very recently formed vaccine – it became a more open discussion about the role of medicinal foods and the role of biotech in solving our food system,” explained Anders.
Anterra FA Ventures II will invest in seed and series stage agtech start-ups developing innovative on-farm solutions, as well as targeting more speculative innovations that could transform food and agriculture.
The firm has already invested in and incubated a handful of companies in the latter category, said Anders, such as a start-up developing viral vaccines for animals using CRISPR gene editing technology, an animal drug discovery platform and ZebiAI, a crop treatment and drug discovery platform.
Anders added that LPs have also benefited from being able to use Anterra as a discovery source for numerous agtech companies, which has also benefited the fund’s portfolio companies.
“That’s turned out to be brilliant. More than two times the money that we’ve invested has now been invested by people just out of our investor base in our companies alone,” he said.
The managing partner added that following a period where venture capital and technology more broadly have been on a super cycle, macro headwinds such as the Russia-Ukraine war, inflation, and commodity price increases are now leading to price corrections following heated valuations across VC.