SANTA MONICA, CA. -- Provivi, Inc., an emerging crop protection company, today announced it has completed an $85 million Series C financing. The round was co-led by Pontifax Global Food and Agriculture Fund ("Pontifax Agtech") and a global investment fund. The round also included new investor Tybourne Capital Management. Existing investors Kairos Ventures, Spruce Capital, Lanx Capital, and BASF Venture Capital also participated in the round.
"The Series C financing is a significant milestone in the growth of our company and builds upon an exciting year where we scaled the production of key pheromone active ingredients, continued to demonstrate the efficacy of our products in row crops, and worked closely with farmers to demonstrate the value being created by our pheromones in field trials," said Dr. Pedro Coelho, co-founder and CEO of Provivi. "The extraordinary conditions facing growers all over the world caused by invasive pests renews our sense of urgency to scale our solutions."
Provivi is developing a family of safer, effective, and economical solutions for crop protection based on pheromones as a foundation for integrated pest management. Pheromones are natural products used by insects of the same species to facilitate mating. The application of pheromones to a field allows for the control of damaging pests while preserving beneficial insects. Provivi's patented production methods enable a step change in the cost of manufacturing pheromones, allowing use of this proven approach in large-acreage crops such as corn, rice, and soy.
"We look forward to partnering with Provivi's world-class team to create an industry leader in high-efficacy, sustainable crop protection," said Dr. Philip Erlanger, co-Managing Partner of Pontifax AgTech. "Regulatory and consumer-driven pressures, coupled with growing pest resistance, necessitate alternatives to traditional chemical applications in crop protection markets. Provivi's pheromone technology provides growers with a disruptive crop protection technology that directly addresses these needs." Dr. Erlanger will join the Company's board of directors. Dr. Barbara Mazur, a globally recognized expert in plant biology and a member of Pontifax AgTech's Strategic Advisory Board, will serve as a board observer.
Mr. Bosun Hau, Managing Director and Co-Head of Private Equity at Tybourne Capital Management, will also serve as a board observer.
Proceeds from the Series C financing will support the launch of Provivi's pheromone products as part of the Company's mission to bring this innovative solution to farmers around the world.
Pheromones are naturally produced substances that have been commercially used to disrupt the mating of insect pests for over 30 years. They are currently applied in approximately two million acres of high-value permanent crops such as apples, grapes, and nuts. The benefits of using pheromones are well established in the scientific literature: they enable a reduction of harmful residues on food while preserving biodiversity.