Cultivation Capital, Arch Angels and BioGenerator Announce Investment in Arvegenix

Cultivation Capital, Arch Angels and BioGenerator Announce Investment in Arvegenix

ST. LOUIS  – Venture capital firm Cultivation Capital, The St. Louis Arch Angels, and BioGenerator, an evergreen investor that creates, grows and invests in promising companies and entrepreneurs, announce the funding of St. Louis ag-tech company, Arvegenix. Cultivation Capital and Monsanto led the $2.5 million round, which includes investments from BioGenerator and the St. Louis Arch Angels.

Arvegenix is developing and improving Field Pennycress as an oilseed crop that will produce high quality oil for industrial and renewable fuels, along with meal for nutritious livestock feed. Pennycress is a winter crop grown between corn and soybeans when land is idle, therefore providing growers with a revenue generating cover crop.

Rick Holton, Cultivation Capital General Partner who has joined Arvegenix’ board, said, “Arvegenix is an opportunity perfectly suited for the Midwest and is embodies the true definition of sustainability. The management team is the best of the best and we are confident that with an increase in crop yield we will build an extremely successful enterprise.”

“BioGenerator has been involved with Arvegenix since its inception and led the first round of funding in the summer of 2014,” said Charlie Bolten, vice president of BioGenerator and Arvegenix board member. “BioGenerator sees immense potential in Arvegenix’ business model, which will provide the environmental benefits of cover crops while leveraging an enormously valuable dormant asset to produce commercially viable products.”

Arvegenix launched in 2013 and has built a strong leadership team that includes CEO Jerry Steiner. Steiner is a former executive vice president at Monsanto with deep industry experience. Several others on the leadership team have backgrounds in agriculture and executive level experience at large companies in the space. Other investors in the company include new backers Prelude Ventures, Prolog Ventures and The Yield Lab, along with previous investors Helix Fund and Missouri Technology Corporation.

“This Series A funding will enable us to expand and accelerate our R&D programs to achieve increased yields for our new crop Pennycress, to conduct regulatory feeding studies on the press-cake, and develop our growing and crushing operations,” said Steiner. “In addition to the progress being made in the technical and business areas, we are fortunate to have investors with strong backgrounds in agriculture, biological sciences, and the energy sectors.”

According to Greg Trapp, member of St. Louis Arch Angels, “We had an above average response to this offer and a group of angels put in almost $500,000.  We’re thrilled to support this start up in the traditionally strong ag-tech space in St. Louis.  Arvegenix’ business plan, underlying science, and the strong management team made this a particularly attractive investment.”

About Cultivation Capital

Cultivation Capital is a St. Louis-based early stage Venture Capital firm investing in high potential technology, life science and AgTech companies throughout the Midwest.  Cultivation Capital is managed by a team of experienced entrepreneurs, who have started more than 25 companies, raised more than $200 Million dollars and had several successful exits.  For more information, visit http://www.cultivationcapital.com.

 About BioGenerator

BioGenerator produces a sustained pipeline of successful bioscience companies and entrepreneurs in St. Louis by creating, growing and investing in promising new enterprises. BioGenerator is a nonprofit subsidiary of BioSTL, which advances St. Louis’ prosperity by cultivating a thriving bioscience sector, building regional capacity to capitalize on St. Louis’ world class medical and plant biosciences. Please visit www.BioGenerator.org for additional information. Follow BioGenerator on LinkedIn linkedin.com/company/BioGenerator and Twitter @BioGeneratorSTL.

About St. Louis Arch Angels

The St. Louis Arch Angels is an angel investment network of 85 members who have invested well over $50M in approximately 60 companies since its inception in 2005.  Investments have been primarily in the agricultural, life sciences and IT areas.  The organization meets on a regular monthly basis, has looked at well over 500 deals in its 10 year existence and has invested as little as $200,000 and as high as $6M in individual companies.  The network has had approximately 6 exits and only a few company failures to date.

###

Share

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *