Europe’s oldest impact investor is setting up a venture capital fund to invest in early-to-growth stage companies. Murielle Gonzalez reports
Farmer working in a cornfield
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Europe’s impact investor Pymwymic has revealed that work is under way for the launch of Healthy Food System Impact Fund in the third quarter of the year. The venture capital fund is being set up to invest in early-to-growth stage companies that are transforming the food system through innovative and disruptive technologies.

Pymwymic made the announcement as it revealed a new partnership with StartLife, Europe’s first agrifoodtech accelerator. Both organisations have joined forces to help start-ups smooth the transition from early stages to growth and shorten the time needed for promising new agrifood technologies to reach their full potential.

The partnership of Pymwymic and StartLife is part of a larger collaboration agreement with Wageningen University & Research (WUR), one of the co-founders of the agrifoodtech accelerator.

The new fund will be based on the sustainable food system approach model designed by WUR.

One-of-a-kind support

Pymwymic typically invests in a start-up when the company passes an annual turnover of €500,000. Through the partnership with StartLife, the impact investor becomes involved in a much earlier stage.

Rogier Pieterse, Pymwymic’s managing director, said the new approach is beneficial for both the fund and the start-ups.

“We know how strategic decisions in an early-stage can impact later stage developments. “Through early involvement, we can help start-ups to better line up for growth and follow-up funding. By doing so we, both Pymwymic and StartLife, want to help start-ups reach their full potential faster.”

Pieterse explained that when it comes to follow-up funding, this approach will also help, as both parties would have developed a good relationship.

StartLife has also set course to further facilitate accessing growth capital for their portfolio start-ups. The accelerator has taken Pymwymic as its growth capital partner, which is complementary to its existing investor partners.

Lin Zhu, investor relations manager of StartLife, said: “With StartLife predominantly supporting pre-revenue start-ups, and Pymwymic backing early-growth start-ups to scale up further, our partnership is an excellent symbiosis that paves the road for the growth of much desired systemic innovation in the ag and food industry.”

Both Pymwymic and StartLife target impact-driven tech start-ups from Europe that provide healthy and sustainable solutions within the food supply chain, from farm to fork.

Date published: 27 January 2021

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