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Pontifax AgTech closes $302 million food and agriculture technology fundqrcode

−− Firm's second fund oversubscribed, hits hard cap

Oct. 9, 2020

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Oct. 9, 2020

Pontifax AgTech Management ("Pontifax AgTech" or "the Firm"), a leading global growth capital investor in the global food and agriculture sector, today announced the final close of its second fund, Pontifax Global Food and Agriculture Technology Fund II ("Fund II"), with commitments totaling $302 million. Fund II reached its extended hard cap of $300 million and was oversubscribed, bringing the Firm's current total AUM to $465M.

Fund II attracted commitments from leading institutional investors, comprised of domestic and international financial institutions, state pension funds, university endowments, foundations, investment firms, large-scale growers and family offices. The Firm's initial fund closed at $105 million in October 2017.

Pontifax AgTech invests globally in commercially established businesses with proven technologies that improve the productivity, sustainability and efficiency of the food and agriculture supply chain. The Firm's principals work with a proprietary network of leading growers, technology experts and strategic corporate partners to thoroughly evaluate and maximize the success of the Fund's investments. 

Ben Belldegrun, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Pontifax AgTech, said, "We are grateful for a strong, positive response to Fund II from both existing and new institutional investors. Sophisticated investors are increasingly discovering the agriculture and food technology sector as a means to diversify their alternatives strategies and as an opportunity to make a significant impact on sustainability. Our growth capital strategy offers investors a compelling risk/return investment profile while benefiting food security, climate change, grower well-being and consumer health."

Food and Agriculture is a $13 trillion business and the world's second-fastest growing industrial sector. It employs nearly 40 percent of the world's population, which the United Nations estimates will be close to 10 billion people by 2050. That, along with increasing per-capita protein and calorie consumption, is driving a worldwide challenge to meet growing food demand in a responsible and sustainable manner.

Phil Erlanger, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Pontifax AgTech, commented, "Food demand is expected to double in the next three decades, while production is constrained by diminishing supplies of land, water and labor, coupled with increasing regulation. The current pandemic has only highlighted issues of food security and makes improving agricultural productivity, nutrition, and supply chain efficiency of paramount importance for global health and sustainability. We are focused on pursuing disruptive technologies that result in healthier food while providing attractive returns for our investors."

Pontifax AgTech has invested in eleven industry-leading companies. Fund I has monetized two investments through the sale of Blue River Technology, a next generation robotics and automation technology for crop cultivation, to John Deere and the successful IPO of Precision Biosciences, a disruptive gene editing technology with application to both human therapeutics and sustainable food traits.

Fund II completed an inaugural investment in Provivi, whose biological crop protection technology enables the production of low-cost pheromones that sustainably disrupt the mating patterns of invasive crop insects.

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