AppHarvest’s expectation to go public is fast becoming a reality. The controlled agriculture company announced today that it is expected to complete its merger with Novus Capital Corp., a special purpose acquisition company, which will enable it to start publicly trading on the Nasdaq on Feb. 1.
Special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs), also called blank-check companies, often provide a faster IPO process for companies. AppHarvest first announced the deal with Novus just a few months ago, in Sept. 2020.
Since then, the four-year-old Morehead, Kentucky-based company has reached a few major milestones, including harvesting the first crop ever from its 60-acre indoor farm and starting construction on two additional farms in the Appalachian region.
The company’s massive greenhouse facility runs off a mix of sensors, LED lighting, and hydroponics to grow produce 365 days per year. Because of the farm’s Eastern Kentucky location, abundant rainwater can be used to power the hydroponic system, minimizing resources used.
AppHarvest’s location also means it is within a day’s driving distance of about 70 percent of the U.S. population. This potentially vast reach combined with the growth possibilities an IPO can provide will help AppHarvest further realize its ambitions to make high-quality, pesticide-free produce available at a manageable price point to all Americans, not just the affluent ones.
The company sent its first shipment of beefsteak tomatoes to U.S. grocery stores last week. Meanwhile, AppHarvest said in a recent statement that it plans to construct more facilities across Kentucky and Central Appalachia, with the intent to be running 12 farms by 2025. The forthcoming IPO will undoubtedly aid in this process.