Food Venture Financing News - Weekly Issue No. 23
In This Issue:
- PPP Forgiveness
- SBA Clarifies the Appeal Process
- Congressional Oversight Commission Blasts Main Street Lending Program
- Food Venture Financing Trends
- CPG Corporate Venture Funds
- Links to Relevant Content and Events
- The SBA's "forgiveness portal" is now open. Lenders may submit borrower forgiveness applications to the SBA for review.
- Some are counseling borrowers against submitting a forgiveness application immediately, noting that the landscape has changed rapidly, and that delaying submission may save unnecessary paperwork and time.
- Some version of the (currently stalled) next federal stimulus relief package is likely to pass Congress which may affect PPP forgiveness; including possible automatic forgiveness of all loans under $150,000.
SBA Clarifies the Appeal Process
- Lenders have 60 days to process an SBA forgiveness application.
- If the lender approves forgiveness, the SBA will then have 90 days to review the lender's decision.
- The SBA issued an interim final rule providing that the SBA's Office of Hearings and Appeals ("OHA") will hear any appeals to the SBA's decisions.
- The Interim Final Rule clarifies that borrowers may not file an OHA appeal contesting lender's decision to reject an application, but rather may request an SBA review of that denial.
Congressional Oversight Commission Blasts Main Street Lending Program
- The MSLP was launched in July, but only $500 million in loans – less than 1/10th of 1% of the MSLP lending capacity – has been issued to date.
- The Congressional Oversight Committee's report dated August 21 explored reasons for the MSLP's modest activity. Concerns include:
- a very slow rollout by the Fed,
- relatively few participating lenders,
- lack of awareness among borrowers, and
- loan terms that are not particularly attractive.
- The MSLP may be revised to increase the number of participants and help more small- and medium-sized businesses struggling to keep afloat through the ongoing economic crisis.
Food Venture Financing Trends
- Large CPG companies have joined the new Coalition of Action on Food Waste, highlighting the focus on sustainability by the food sector.
- Lever VC recently announced that it had raised a new venture fund dedicated to early stage alternative protein companies.
- Agtech startups are focusing on areas for future growth including delivery of natural and healthier foods to urban areas and efficiency in produce supply chains.
- Black-owned food companies are thriving in categories that have been ignored by traditional CPG companies.
CPG Corporate Venture Funds
Our featured CPG corporate venture investment fund this week is Hain Celestial's Cultivate Ventures.
- Hain Celestial, the organic and natural food specialist, established its "strategic platform" Cultivate Ventures in November 2016 with a mission to "grow strategic investments and act as an incubator of small acquisitions until they reach scale for inclusion in the company's core platforms."
- Key investments include:
- Local 130 Seafood, a seafood business
- Maketto, a culinary marketplace
- FoodyTV, a TV food network
- Foodify, an office food delivery firm
- Better Bean Co., a US manufacturer of bean-based products (2017)
Links to Relevant Content and Events
- TemperPack raises $31m Series C to Meet Surge in Demand for Food E-Commerce
- Datasembly's Real Time Pricing Tool For Consumer Goods Raises $10.3 Million
- Vertical Farming Software Startup iFarm Raises $4m
- Hormel Ingredient Solutions Launches New Plant-Based Meat Alternatives
- Accelerating the Need for Collaborative Partnerships
- What's Next for Food Retail Self-Checkout?
- Aldi CEO on Being America's Fastest-Growing Grocer
- Walmart Surpasses Amazon in Online Grocery Share
- Nestle and Tesco Among Food Majors to Join New Food Waste Coalition
- Lever VC Launches Alt-Protein Fund for Early-Stage Companies
- Agtech Sector Blooms As More Dollars and Startups Rush In
- How 3 Black-Owned Businesses Created Companies Where CPG Giants Weren't Looking
- Lemon Perfect Closes Substantial Seed Financing Round With Participation From Elite Consumer Funds, NBA Stars, and Other Influencers, As Brand's Distribution Footprint Accelerates
- Hint Closes $25 Million Investment Round Led by Springboard Growth Capital
DWT's 2020 Women Entrepreneurs Boot Camp: Plant-Based Protein
October 6 & 8, 2020
DWT's Project W is pleased to announce its 2020 Women Entrepreneurs Boot Camp (WEB). This year WEB features three tracks, one of which is devoted to female-founded companies innovating plant-based protein products. The plant-based protein program will be held on October 6 and 8 for a cohort of 6 to 8 female founders of seed stage companies developing solutions in the plant-based protein sector. More information and a link to apply can be found here.
Naturally Bay Area QUICK BITES Wednesday Lunchtime Series
Safe Sampling: Creative Ways To Drive Trial
- Mary Tarcynski: Principal, Parabolic
- Pete Brennan: Host, Naturally Bay Area & Co-Founder, Soñar Foods
Wednesday, September 2, 2020 - 12:00 – 12:30 p.m. PT
ICA's Resilience Lab Accelerator Culmination Event
The Resilience Lab Accelerator, sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, was specifically created to catalyze the growth of companies serving their communities. It is designed to strengthen the long-term resilience of these businesses as they provide the goods and services that our communities need most.
At this Culmination Event you will hear from their very first Resilience Lab Accelerator Cohort, made up of twenty-four amazing businesses that have spent six weeks learning from expert advising, technical education, and hands-on business support. They will showcase their dynamic inaugural cohort of businesses through panel discussions and an interactive expo hall.
Wednesday, September 2, 2020 - 10:00 a.m. PT
Round Table Presented by BevNET & NOSH: Investment & Valuations Q&A
Stu Strumwasser, the Managing Director of Green Circle Capital, will be answering questions about valuation trends in the natural products industry and the overall changes in fundraising and operational strategy that can help guide brands as the capital cycle changes. Please send in questions ahead of time to get valuation and fundraising advice from an experienced investment advisor with deep roots in the food and beverage business.
Wednesday, August 26, 2020
TIG's eTardigrade Program
A ten (10) week hybrid online program focused on helping emerging natural product brands become nimble, capital-efficient and resilient creating tardigrades not unicorns.
Eight (8) modules; each module includes video lessons, articles, interactive assessments, and worksheets all aimed at providing actionable insights that can be immediately leveraged to grow your brand.
The Eight (8) Modules:
- The Tardigrade & The Threefold Path
- Cash Flow & Waterfalls
- Growth Hypothesis
- Capital - Strategy & Structure
- Zen of the Pitch
- Growth Hacking
- Scale & Activation
- Community & Accountability
The eTardigrade program equips you with the tools and knowledge needed to build a nimble, capital-efficient, resilient brand. You will have a cogent growth hypothesis, be investment ready, and have achieved a Tardigrade level of adaptability. All of which will help position you to thrive in whatever marketplace conditions arise in the future.
The Program Also Includes:
- Live interactive online workshops each week
- Access to course facilitators during weekly virtual office hours.
- Four (4) dedicated hours of 1:1 coaching and support.
- Access to the TIG Community.
- Access to TIG Events including TIG Talks, virtual happy hours, and more
Mapping COVID-19 Outbreaks in the Food System
Leah Douglas, reporter at the Food and Environment Reporting Network and regular guest on What Doesn't Kill You, joins Katy Keiffer to discuss FERN's work to closely track the spread of COVID-19 at meatpacking plants, food processing facilities, and farms. They've published an interactive map that shows the location of plants and farms where cases of COVID-19 and/or deaths have been reported. Tune in to their conversation about these efforts and Douglas's op-ed rebuttal to Smithfield's accusations against the media.
Please check out DWT's newly re-launched Startup Law Blog
At Davis Wright Tremaine LLP (DWT), we are proud to have one of the largest Food & Beverage legal practices in the country, with over 40 attorneys representing food innovators, entrepreneurs, and investors at every level of the food chain, from Farm to Label.
Please contact our Food and Beverage team if we can assist you in any way in these unprecedented times.
The facts, laws, and regulations regarding COVID-19 are developing rapidly. Since the date of publication, there may be new or additional information not referenced in this advisory. Please consult with your legal counsel for guidance.
DWT will continue to provide up-to-date insights and virtual events regarding COVID-19 concerns. Our most recent insights, as well as information about recorded and upcoming virtual events, are available at www.dwt.com/COVID-19.