WNWN Closes $5.6 Million in Series A Funding Round
The round was led by PeakBridge, a foodtech VC firm investing in innovative, scalable, climate- and health-focused companies with protectable technologies. PeakBridge, a core member of EIT Food, invests globally in early-stage and Series A companies, having a long-term positive impact on food systems.
FoodLabs (formerly Atlantic Food Labs) extended its commitment with follow-on investment. The round also included participation from Geschwister Oetker Beteiligungen Group via its subsidiary Martin Braun-Gruppe, Mustard Seed Maze, PINC, Investbridge AgriTech, and HackCapital.
WNWN will use the investment to scale up manufacturing and add headcount as it prepares for a UK retail launch later in 2023.
“This blend of VCs gives us deep and strategic food tech experience to make a significant positive impact, and with PeakBridge’s partnership and team, we are well on our way to create a tastier, more ethical future of food,” said WNWN CEO Ahrum Pak. “This investment is also very timely given the new European ban on cocoa linked to deforestation, as WNWN can reduce the cocoa supply chain's strain on the planet and on cocoa farmers entrenched in poverty.”
WNWN employs a proprietary fermentation process to transform widely available plant-based ingredients like cereals and legumes to create cocoa-free choc that tastes, melts, snaps and bakes just like chocolate. Its formula is vegan, caffeine-free, gluten-free, palm oil-free, lower in sugar than comparable products, and safe for dogs since it contains no theobromine. Cocoa-free WNWN products produce 80% less carbon emissions than conventional chocolates, based on an internal lifecycle analysis.
“Ingredient innovations like WNWN’s are key to building a more resilient, equitable, sustainable food system, and this in turn opens the doors to other goals like responsible production and consumption,” said Erich Sieber, Founding Partner at PeakBridge. “Not only does WNWN's product have the potential to offer health benefits and address sustainability concerns, but it also opens up a world of exciting flavor possibilities. We are confident that WNWN will lead the charge in this category and are proud to be part of this journey.”
“This funding is a validation of our science and our ability to scale,” said WNWN CTO Dr. Johnny Drain. “With demand for chocolate said to be increasing year over year, conventional supply chains can't keep up, at least not at the expense of the planet and human dignity.”
WNWN has already released two cocoa-free chocolate products via direct-to-consumer channels to test its concept. Both its dark choc thins and Waim! bar, its take on the classic Daim bar, sold out immediately—a positive signal to future retail partners.
Since the product launches the company has taken on a new facility that increased its production space eightfold. With its expansion, WNWN has begun supplying partners with ingredients and finished products for projects like curated gifts and high-end restaurants and bars.
Consumers are increasingly concerned about deforestation, habitat destruction, and unfair labor practices in the conventional chocolate supply chain. More than a million child laborers are estimated to work in Ivory Coast and Ghana, where three-quarters of the world’s cocoa is grown.
Cocoa crops are also vulnerable due to climate change, including rising temperatures and reduced rainfall, which has led experts to predict chocolate shortages in the coming years.
Other news from the department business & finance
Coffee instead of cinema and concert
What people in Germany are doing without Tchibo Coffee Report 2023
Warsteiner Extra - the extra for summer
In contrast to the classic pilsner, the new product has only half the alcohol content
Lindt & Sprüngli publishes Sustainability Report 2022
Over 112,000 farmers in seven cocoa source countries benefit from the L&S Farming Program
Could a retrofit of existing infrastructure help solve plant-based scalability?
Opportunities in existing infrastructure for plant-based meat companies
Winners of the “Renewable Material of the Year 2023” Innovation Award
Biodegradable elastic materials based on food waste, carbon-light yeast oil, and a plastic-free natural polymer
Exciting foodtech business opportunities in Skåne, Sweden
“Food is heavily put under the microscope when we’re talking about climate change and other aspects of sustainability,”
Eating as an art of living instead of XL portions
Experts advise enjoyment in company, reflection and slow eating - enormous need for research on portion sizes
Enzymit Partners with Aleph Farms to Reduce Production Costs and Shorten Time-to-Market for Cultivated Meat
Enzymit Employs AI and Deep Learning to Develop Novel Insulin Substituents as Processing Aids for Cost-Efficient Cultivated Meat Production
Most read news
Extracting the best flavor from coffee
Understanding the origin of uneven extraction in brewing espresso can improve the beverage and enable substantial financial savings by using coffee more efficiently and sustainably
Paper-based packaging has a good eco-image
Study by the University of Bonn examines how the type of packaging influences purchase intention
More news from our other portals
Researchers harvest abundant clean energy from thin air, 24/7
“The air contains an enormous amount of electricity”
Presence of nicotine and antidepressants detected in Antarctic waters
A study with the participation of IDAEA and IGME locates organic contaminants derived from human activity in inland and coastal waters of the frozen continent
Electronic noses sniff out volatile organic compounds
Improving the fluid flow inside noselike chambers can enhance detection of harmful chemicals
New concept for lithium-air batteries
Research project in Germany aims to improve the stability of this novel battery type
Microbe of the Year 2023: Bacillus subtilis – for health and technology
Already, Bacillus subtilis is indispensable in many industries, and many more innovations are expected
New theory explains superconductivity in spun graphene trilayers
The study, carried out by CSIC scientists, lays the foundations for understanding the mechanisms of certain unconventional superconducting materials
Artificial intelligence identifies anti-aging drug candidates targeting ‘zombie’ cells
New platform has potential to fuel advances in senolytic anti-aging compounds and longevity research
Verder Group acquires ERWEKA
With this acquisition, Verder Scientific expands its portfolio to include dissolution and tablet testing equipment for the pharmaceutical and life science sectors
An electric vehicle battery for all seasons
New electrolyte for lithium-ion batteries performs well in frigid regions and seasons
Researchers develop new method to synthesise cannabis plant compound
cis-tetrahydrocannabinoids can now be produced synthetically, enabling pharmaceutical applications
Launching Revvity: A Scientific Solutions Company Powering Innovation from Discovery to Cure
The Company was previously affiliated with PerkinElmer, Inc.
Scientists streamline a widely used chemical reaction, creating new manufacturing opportunities
This research should have a far-reaching impact: it allows scientists to forge valuable carbon-carbon bonds used in the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industries, and beyond
Ångström-Resolution Fluorescence Microscopy
This innovation is poised to usher in a paradigm shift in our approach to study biological systems with thus far unprecedented detail
Graphene-based breakthrough in hydrogen peroxide production
Process produces higher yields with the potential to be more cost-effective and environmentally friendly than current methods
Insilico Medicine-led study combines quantum computing and generative AI for drug discovery
“Quantum computing is recognized as the next technology breakthrough which will make a great impact, and the pharmaceutical industry is believed to be among the first wave of industries benefiting from the advancement”
The World’s Smallest Impedance Spectroscopy System in the Form of a Pill Finds Weak Spots in Machines and People
Small as a candy: Waterproof IoT sensor reliably measures the properties of liquids even in hard-to-reach places
Bioeconomy startup traceless receives millions in funding from the German Federal Ministry for the Environment
Planned construction of a demonstration production plant receives 5 million euros in funding
Eat right, live longer: could a moderate protein diet be the coveted elixir of youth?
Researchers decode the correlation between dietary protein intake and improved metabolic health in mice
Fight against microplastics: Groundbreaking invention in the field of packaging materials
Environmentally friendly coating could replace plastic packaging
X-ray imaging captures fleeting defects in sodium-ion batteries
A Cornell-led collaboration succeeded in identifying an elusive mechanism that can trigger degradation in sodium-ion batteries
Li-Cycle and Glencore Announce Plans for a Significant European Recycling Hub
Would be the largest source of recycled battery-grade lithium as well as recycled nickel and cobalt in Europe
AI supports analysis of metallic materials
"With our specially developed algorithm, we are three times faster"
Chemical reactions completely without waste
Mechanically driven reactions run completely without solvents: this sustainable process is now to be ready for the market
Something is happening in the food & beverage industry ...
This is what true pioneering spirit looks like: Plenty of innovative start-ups are bringing fresh ideas, lifeblood and entrepreneurial spirit to change tomorrow's world for the better. Immerse yourself in the world of these young companies and take the opportunity to get in touch with the founders.