This week, Chilean food technology startup The Not Company (NotCo) announced that it closed a $85 million Series C funding round. Founded in 2015 by biotech engineer Matías Muchnick, biochemist Pablo Zamora, and computer scientist Karim Pichara, NotCo’s products rely on “Guiseppe”—a discovery platform that identifies plant-based proteins that can mimic animal products. Using this technology, the company currently makes NotMayo, NotMilk, NotIceCream, NotBurger, and NotMeat. This year, NotCo partnered with Papa John’s and Burger King to bring its plant-based meat products to their menus in Chile.
“We are pleased to partner with a true disruptor in the food-tech industry,” said Ramiro Lauzan, Partner at L Catterton Latin America—a private equity firm that co-led the investment. “NotCo is pursuing a fundamentally original way of replacing animal-based foods with more sustainable alternatives through the application of food science and innovative technology. By leveraging our experience in ‘better for you’ businesses around the world, and working alongside NotCo’s talented team, we look forward to materializing the company’s successful expansion into the US market.”
NotCo’s new funding round builds on a previous $30 million investment backed by Kaszek Ventures, The Craftory, and Bezos Expedition—a fund controlled by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. “We continue to actively support the company since its early days with a strong conviction of the potential that NotCo has to be the leading global player in the food-tech space,” Nicolas Szekasy, Managing Partner at Kaszek Ventures, said. “In this uncertain time, consumers have amplified their appetite for the plant-based world. In parallel, COVID-19 has allowed us to see that meat production is not only environmentally harmful and inefficient, but also that its supply chain is fragile. So we are happy to witness an inflection point where plant-based products are becoming an increasing proportion of a new normal, once they can actually taste amazing like we see NotCo crafting.”
NotCo’s Muchnick (CEO) and Pichara (CTO) are relocating to the US and have hired a team of executives who previously worked for companies such as Danone and Coca-Cola to oversee the startup’s American growth.