Reuters broke the news, noting that this round brings the total amount Impossible has raised to more than $750 million, though Crunchbase pegs that number at $687.5 million. Whichever is the case, Impossible is reportedly now being valued at $2 billion, while as of this writing, Beyond Meat has a market cap of nearly $4 billion.
Both Impossible and Beyond create plant-based meat that looks, tastes and feels like traditional meat. Impossible’s big fundraise today is another reminder that the plant-based meat sector is, pardon the phrase, sizzling. Restaurants around the U.S. are quickly adding either Beyond or Impossible to reach vegetarian (or flexitarian) audiences. Qdoba, Red Robin, and White Castle all offer Impossible burgers, and Burger King will launch its Impossible Whopper to all of its 7,000-plus locations by the end of this year.
This popularity, however, is putting a strain on Impossible, which is reportedly struggling to keep up with demand. Production was an issue Beyond Meat faced as well before adding a second production facility last year. Presumably, Impossible’s new cash will help it iron out manufacturing wrinkles as it continues to scale.
Impossible will need all the production plant-based muscle it can get as it expands outside of restaurants and into grocery aisles in the second half of this year. Beyond Meat already has a strong foothold at retail and you can imagine the two companies will be ratcheting up marketing and promotion to get consumer attention and dollars.
Today’s funding news also answers another question we’ve been asking here at The Spoon: What does Beyond Meat’s IPO mean for Impossible Foods? Beyond’s initial success as a public company paves the way for an Impossible IPO, but Impossible’s CFO, David Lee told Retuers for its story: “We believe in self-reliance. Being ready to go public is a priority for the company because we need to be operating at the highest level of rigor,” he continued, “but we are not in a rush, nor are we announcing an IPO filing.”
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