Today, Silicon Valley startup Geltor announced it has raised a $91.3 million Series B investment round to help accelerate its mission to replace animal-derived proteins, such as collagen and gelatin, with vegan ingredients in a variety of consumer packaged goods. Founded in 2015 by Princeton University graduates Alex Lorestani, PhD and Nick Ouzounov, PhD, Geltor develops vegan proteins that replace their animal-derived counterparts—such as collagen (a component of gelatin)—for the skincare, food, and dietary supplement industry through a proprietary process that relies on plant-based fermentation. The company will use the new funding to fuel the expansion of its “Ingredients-as-a-Service” platform on a global scale.
“Our goal is to make it ridiculously easy for iconic brands to build sustainable products. This next stage of growth will allow Geltor to meet the moment our world is facing, as businesses recognize the urgent need to transition to a sustainable protein supply chain,” Lorestani said. “We’re grateful to have investors who see Geltor as an index of this important shift to a system powered by fermentation and plant-based platforms like ours. As a scientist, I’m convinced that the highest-impact action I can take to support human and planetary health is making our Ingredients-as-a-Service platform better every single day.”
Earlier this year, Geltor launched Elastapure—the first-ever 100-percent plant-based elastin ingredient—a key protein in skincare that stimulates cell growth and helps skin maintain its elasticity as it ages. The company also produces vegan collagens in two formulations, HumaColl21 and Collume, and signed a multi-million dollar agreement in 2019 with leading collagen manufacturer GELITA to commercialize the world’s first animal-free collagen.
While the global industrial supply chain was heavily disrupted in the last year with the outbreak of African Swine Fever and COVID-19, Geltor was able to scale its technology platform by 100-fold, producing hundreds of new animal-free proteins that are resilient against disease-driven disruption. “We see huge market potential for Geltor’s protein platform across categories from cosmetics to food. We are excited by the speed and skill with which they are building out their capabilities,” said Costa Yiannoulis, Director of CPT Capital Investment which led Geltor’s Series B round. “Even more so, in light of the havoc wreaked by COVID-19 on protein supply chains globally, we believe Geltor is laying the foundations for the sustainable, resilient, protein supply chain of the future.”