Norwegian top-selling DJ and music producer Kygo invested in plant-based meat company Daring Foods through his ventures company Palm Tree Crew Investments.
Daring Foods announced this week that it had closed an 8 million dollar investment round. The Series A led by Maveron included venture firms such as GoodFriends, Stray Dog Capital, and private investors Mike Smith (CFO of Stitch Fix) and Brian Swette (former chairman of Burger King and the current president at Sweet Earth).
Kygo gained international recognition in 2014 after releasing the remix of Ed Sheeran's the track "I See Fire ". His single "Firestone" was streamed 732 million times on YouTube and 715 million times on Spotify, as of September 2020. Palm Tree Crew Investments is the early-stage investment arm of Kygo's and his manager Myles Shear's Palm Tree Crew Holdings. The company invests in consumer goods, technology, hospitality and entertainment industries.
Daring Foods creates what it describes as a healthier version of plant-based meat that everyone can eat every day.
The company was established in 2018 in Scotland, but the founders decided to move to the US market after receiving initial interest from investors based in New York.
Daring's plant-based chicken is made with clean ingredients such as no-GMO soy protein, sunflower oil, and natural flavourings like paprika, pepper, ginger, nutmeg, mace and cardamom. It contains no chemicals such as methyl cellulose, wheat gluten, carrageenan, gums, or starches. The vegan chicken is healthier and lighter when compared to rivals. It has only 90 calories per 70g serving, the same amount of protein, less fat and more than double the amount of fibre.
Daring is building the company's culture working remotely and focusing on digital marketing to drive customers to its brand during the pandemic times.
Earlier this year, the company launched a direct to consumer sales via the Daring Foods website. In autumn, the brand is adding a new product - breaded chicken pieces.
Daring Foods co-founder Ross Mackay said that the latest capital would be used to expand capacity and hire new team members."Capacity is one of the biggest issues for many plant-based companies, and we are operating at a fraction of what we can do, which is hugely exciting for us," he said.
"As for the team, it will grow from three to 10 to 20 over the next month or so, which is a lot when you're trying to build a culture, especially in a fully remote working environment, so it's my job to make sure we're all aligned and singing from the same hymn sheet," he added.
The company is also planning to work with the fresh plant-based meat category at certain retailers. Mackay said: "Our product has a 10-day shelf-life when it's slacked out from frozen to fresh, so it's something we're looking at for the beginning of next year in a new format."