Saudi VC KBW Ventures invests in US cellular seafood firm BlueNalu

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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BlueNalu Image
Representational Image

Saudi Arabia-based venture capital (VC) firm KBW Ventures made an additional investment in US-based food-tech start-up BlueNalu after taking part in its $60 million debt financing round.

This is the second capital infusion made by Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud-owned KBW Ventures in the firm after participating in BlueNalu’s $20 million Series A in early 2020.

According to KBW Ventures, the investment into BlueNalu, which produces seafood products directly from fish cells is the biggest ever for a cell-based seafood company worldwide.

Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud Image
Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud
Founder and CEO
KBW Ventures

“We have increased our stake in BlueNalu by investing for the second time. Our commitment to inject further capital is based on the company’s impressive forward roadmap, detailing a clear path to ramping up production and bringing its first product to market.”

The latest capital infusion will allow BlueNalu to achieve significant milestones over the coming year, including opening a nearly 40,000 square feet pilot production facility in San Diego, completing FDA regulatory review for its first products, and initiating marketplace testing in a variety of foodservice establishments throughout the US.

The first also expects to launch mahi-mahi (a common dolphinfish) later this year, followed by the launch of a premium bluefin tuna thereafter.

The global market for seafood is valued at an estimated $200 billion.

The Rage Capital led the $60 million convertible note financing also significant participation from Agronomics, Lewis & Clark AgriFood, McWin, and Siddhi Capital. Other Strategic investors included Radicle Growth, by way of the Radicle Protein Challenge by Syngenta, Rich Products Corporation and Thai Union.