Next Gen Foods, which makes a plant-based chicken brand TiNDLE, announced yesterday that it has raised a $20 million extension of its seed round. This extension includes new investors such as Global Fund GGV Capital, Bits x Bites, Yeo Hiap Seng, as well as existing investors Temasek and K3 Ventures. This latest round follows Next Gen’s $10 million raise in March of this year and brings the company’s total amount of funding to $30 million.
Singapore-based Next Gen Foods first launched its TiNDLE brand through restaurants in the spring of this year. TiNDLE is made from soy protein, wheat gluten, wheat starch, and sunflower and coconut oils, and contains 17 grams of protein per serving. The company says TiNDLE is now sold in more than 70 restaurants in Singapore, Hong Kong, and Macau.
With its new money, Next Gen says it will expand into the U.S. market and hire more than 50 employees that will primarily be based in the San Francisco Bay Area. At the same time, Next Gen will continue its expansion across the APAC and Middle East, and establish a research and development center in Singapore.
Next Gen Foods is entering the U.S. market at a time when there are more plant-based chicken options than ever. Other startups making forays into the plant-based chicken space include SIMULATE, Rebellyous, Daring, and Nowadays. Not to mention Beyond Meat, the publicly traded plant-based giant, which just launched its own plant-based chicken tenders for restaurants this week.
That so many companies are vying to create a plant-based chicken alternative isn’t surprising given that chicken is the most consumed meat in the U.S., Next Gen’s product could help it stand out in that competitive field however, because its chicken isn’t a nugget or a tender. It’s more of a meat analog that the company says can be prepared using a number of different techniques (grilling, frying, etc.) across a range of cuisines.