Proterra to launch Asia-focused $800m agribusiness fund

The fund will follow the firm’s last two food funds, capitalizing on rising demand for quality food in emerging markets.

Proterra Investment Partners is planning to launch a new Asia-focused fund targeting between $700 million and $800 million in 2019, focusing on the food and agriculture sector in emerging markets, Agri Investor has learned.

Fund III will build on the success of Food Fund 2 which closed in 2015 on $700 million, after Proterra spun out from Black River Asset Management, a wholly-owned, independently-managed subsidiary of Cargill. A large number of investors from Food Fund 1, which closed on $455 million in 2011, returned to invest in the second fund, the Dutch pension fund PGGM told us previously. The Dutch pension invested between $50 million and $100 million into each fund, a spokesman added at that time.

Proterra Investment Partners aims to capitalize on the rising demand for protein production and increasing consumption of ready-to-eat foods. “We believe that the continued urbanization of emerging markets, an expanding middle class, shifting dietary preferences towards protein consumption and the increased importance of safe, high-quality foods are trends that will drive long-term growth in these sectors”, it explained in a statement.

Food Fund investments include raw milk production in China and India, poultry production in Thailand and beef production in Brazil, the source said.

The manager also has farmland funds in Australia and Latin America, pursuing investment opportunities based on the view that rising food demand calls for an increase in farmland as well as increased investment in existing farmland to maximize productivity.

Proterra Investment Partners is an alternative investment manager focused on private equity investments in the natural resource sectors of agriculture, food, metals and mining, with offices in Minneapolis, London, Mumbai, Brazil, Singapore, Shanghai and Sydney. It manages more than $2.1 billion in committed capital.