WP Global Partners leads $2.4 mln round for BrightFarms

Urban agricultural firm BrightFarms said Tuesday that it closed $2.4 million in financing, raising the Series B tally to $7.4 million. WP Global Partners led the round with participation from other investors that included NGEN Partners and Emil Capital Partners. In conjunction with the funding, the company has named Gregory S. Oberholtzer, a senior managing director at WP Global, to its board.

PRESS RELEASE

New York, NY (PRWEB) June 03, 2014
BrightFarms, Inc., the leading urban agriculture company, today announced the closing of an oversubscribed $2.4 million tranche of financing, resulting in a total Series B financing of $7.4 million. The tranche was led by WP Global Partners LLC, a private equity firm with over $2 billion in assets under management. The financing, which also includes participation by investors NGEN Partners, Emil Capital Partners, BrightFarms founder Ted Caplow, and several other prominent investors, coincides with BrightFarms’ announcement that Gregory S. Oberholtzer, senior managing director at WP Global, has joined BrightFarms’ board.
BrightFarms has emerged as the leading urban agriculture company, with more than $100 million in backlogged projects, close to $20 million in capital raised to date, and its first 1.3 acre prototype farm successfully operating and selling under the industry’s first Produce Purchase Agreements.
BrightFarms aims to be the country’s first national brand of locally grown, great tasting produce. The company is addressing a large, attractive and fast-growing market opportunity with a strong leadership team and world-class investors, board members and partners. BrightFarms is exploiting a financial and environmental arbitrage opportunity by building a distributed network of local greenhouse farms. Its long-term fixed-price contracts with supermarkets are unique to the industry, reducing risk, attracting project finance and enabling scale.
“We are thrilled to have WP Global Partners join the BrightFarms family,” stated BrightFarms CEO Paul Lightfoot. “WP’s successful investment track record further validates BrightFarms’ strategies and the strength of the urban agriculture market opportunity.”
“BrightFarms offers a sustainable and commercially viable solution to consumers’ increasing desire for fresh and locally grown produce,” said Mr. Oberholtzer. “Their business model and controlled greenhouse systems allow supermarkets the certainty of a continuous supply of fresh, high quality produce. We are pleased to be investment partners in the company’s growth.”
About BrightFarms
BrightFarms grows local produce, nationwide. By financing, building, and operating local greenhouse farms, BrightFarms eliminates time, distance, and costs from the food supply chain. Borrowing from the highly successful renewable energy industry, BrightFarms signs long-term purchase agreements with supermarkets that feature fixed prices and minimum volume commitments. BrightFarms’ growing method uses far less land and water than conventional agriculture, and its urban locations create local green jobs and help to bring healthy, fresh produce to neighborhoods. BrightFarms’ partnerships with supermarkets, cities, capital sources, and vendors allow it to develop markets and projects faster and better than any competitor. For more information, please visit http://www.brightfarms.com.

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