Plant-based food firm in HK nets $70m –

File photo of Green Monday Holdings. [Photo/]

TPG and Swire-led funding to help Green Monday expand worldwide

Green Monday Holdings, a Hong Kong-based producer of plant-based foods, has raised $70 million, the firm announced on Tuesday.

The latest funding round was led by TPG’s The Rise Fund and Swire Pacific Limited. It is also the largest of its kind to date in Asia, according to Green Monday.

The infusion is expected to accelerate the company’s expansion into catering outlets and retail chains worldwide.

The firm said it aims to expand its global presence in the next six months, from the current 10 markets to over 20 markets across Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and North America.

It will also increase its points of sale from about 20,000 to over 40,000 worldwide. Its Green Common flagship stores will be launched across China and Singapore.

Part of the new investment will be used to develop more plant-based food products, and to boost production, distribution and supply chain capabilities.

Chang Sun, who oversees TPG’s China operations, said: “We look forward to working with Green Monday to further develop its product offerings, expand its reach, and deepen the strong consumer connect for a more sustainable future.”

Green Monday, part of the Green Monday Group, operates Omni-Foods and Green Common stores that constitute a one-stop future food hub spanning research to retail and distribution.

OmniFoods is a food technology company that produces alternative protein products such as OmniPork, OmniPork Luncheon, OmniPork Strip and OmniEat.

Green Common provides retail outlets of totally plant-based food, distribution and dining operations.

On the Chinese mainland, Omni-Pork is available at catering outlets such as Starbucks, Wagas, and Jixiang Wonton. OmniPork retail packs and flash-frozen ready-to-eat meals are sold at supermarket chains such as Ole, City’Super and Metro.

Its products also retail via Green Common’s e-stores on Tmall and WeChat Mall platforms. The company said it will open new flagship stores in Shanghai in the fourth quarter of this year and keep expanding its online and offline sales networks.

Green Monday’s focus on mock pork products correlates with local consumers’ preference as 65 percent of the meat consumed in China is pork.

“If we want to change the world, we must find ways to shift Asian diet and consumption patterns, which means we must find ways to reduce Asia’s dependence on pork,” said David Yeung, co-founder and CEO of Green Monday Group.

Li Chen, deputy director of the food and beverage sector at Mintel, a research firm, said: “As a Hong Kong protein alternative brand, it is more familiar with Asian diets and cuisine. But the key is how to better integrate mock pork into Chinese ways of cooking and to make them taste like the real deal.”

Green Monday said its products cater mostly to young consumers who care about sustainability and climate change, and those interested in physical fitness and wellness.

Its signature blend of plant-based protein is made from peas, healthy soy, shiitake mushrooms and rice, the firm said.

It further said it will continue to cut costs to lower its product prices in the coming months on the back of economies of scale in ingredient sourcing, production and logistics. It is considering establishing a factory in South China’s Guangdong province.

David Cogman, development director of Swire Pacific, a diversified business with presence in real estate, sugar and aviation, said its subsidiary Cathay Pacific has been serving OmniPork products to passengers during flights.

Explaining the rationale for Swire’s investment in Green Monday, Cogman said the latter is looking to working together on the retail front, including a network of malls, hotels and food and beverage businesses, in Hong Kong and on the Chinese mainland. In addition, it is eyeing supply chain operations across the country.

Earlier this month, Beyond Meat, a US plant-based meat maker, said it is building two new production facilities in East China’s Zhejiang province to make products like plant-based beef, vegetarian pork and mock chicken. Production is expected to start in early 2021.

On Aug 19, Starfield, a Chinese plant-based meat maker, received an undisclosed investment estimated around $10 million from Joy Capital and Sky9 Capital.

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