A financial investor funds ventures they believe will provide positive financial returns. However, in the case of the investors below, they believe that their investments will provide both financial returns and a better future. Whether it be in clean energy, sustainable food production, better health care treatments or cruelty-free fashion.
In a world where mega corporations hold substantial power in shaping consumer behaviour through aggressive marketing and funding favourable policies to be passed, the commercial world is gradually shifting as investors fund companies that have the capacity to become the mega corps of the next generation (think Impossible Foods).
For plant-based business owners who are currently looking for funding, you know who to DM.
(Do share with if you know of any other investors that should be on this list!)
Founder and CEO, KBW Ventures
HRH Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud
Since launching KBW Ventures in 2013, the firm has invested in firms
that produces plant-based animal substitutes, as well as those working on green energy and innovative tech. Prince Khaled is a passionate and outspoken advocate for the animals, and has set personal ambitious goals such as relegating factory farming in his lifetime.
Fun fact: As a member of the royal Saudi family, Prince Khaled has been instrumental in establishing various plant-based eateries in the Middle East. To stay updated on Prince Khaled's plant-powered journey, follow him on Instagram here.
Managing Director, VegInvest
For over 18 years, Amy has been the 'voice in the court' for animals as an animal rights attorney. As a partner at Egert and Trakinski, she litigated
on behalf of national animal protection organizations, grassroots advocacy groups, and individual clients. In 2015, she joined VegInvest where the firm provides early-stage capital and guidance to companies striving to replace the use of animals.
Fun fact: Amy has been vegan for 19 years, and lives in New York City with her cat, Nola, whom she rescued after Hurricane Katrina. Follow Amy via (and Nola) her Instagram here.
Managing Partner, 500 Startups
Having founded (and exited) 2 companies in Malaysia before joining 500 Startups as the Managing Partner, Khailee was instrumental in bridging the VC industry between
Silicon Valley and Asia (especially South-East Asia) which saw capital being deployed into emerging markets. Living by his motto "spreading weapons of mass creation to entrepreneurial revolutionaries across the globe", it has allowed hundreds of entrepreneurs to be funded by the most active seed VC globally.
Fun fact: As a fitness enthusiast (even once gracing the cover of Men's Health), Khailee used to be purely technical about food, usually only sustaining on cod, tuna and eggs. However, 3 years ago, in an effort to impress his vegetarian friend, Khailee turned vegan overnight. They're now married.
CEO, Beyond Investing
Claire has led a formidable career in finance. One that saw her in multiple positions of power in institutions such as UBS and Albourne
Partners. As an investor, Beyond Impact Advisors invests in products that provides non-animal alternative products and services which facilitate a vegan lifestyle. They take a step further, by also ensuring that they don't invest in any companies that produce a negative environmental impact.
Fun fact: Claire currently resides in Geneva, Switzerland and has been a vegan/vegetarian since the age of 15. She's a founding trustee of Beyond Cruelty Foundation, and has existing investments in vegan catering, clean meat and vegan clothing and accessories companies. You can connect with her here!
Venture Partner, New Crop Capital
Dan Altschuler Malek
At New Crop Capital, Dan funds early-stage companies that develop plant-based and cultured
meat alternatives. Prior to the VC life, Dan was an entrepreneur himself having founded Bodhi Natural Snacks, followed by being an MD at Eight Communications, a boutique branding and digital agency. He currently serves as a mentor and board advisor for various food-related programs.
Fun fact: A Mexican living in Silicon Valley, Dan graduated from Universidad Iberoamericana, Ciudad de México, and started his career as a Relationship Manager for Bank Boston, Mexico City! To follow farmer and gatherer Dan on Twitter, click here.
Founding Partner, Fifty Years
Born out of his personal pain-point that advocacy could be updated with tech to increase participation, Seth is the founder of a
digital organizing tool company called Amicus. With Fifty Years, his aim is to support entrepreneurs (at seed stage) solving the world’s biggest problems with technology.
Fun fact: Seth was part of the Obama 2008 campaign, and has been part of the advocacy scene since he was 14. Take a peek into his mind via his Medium post musings.
Founder & CEO, Next Wave Impact
Dr. Alicia Robb
Dr. Alicia Robb is the Founder and CEO of Next Wave Impact and a managing partner of two early stage
venture funds. She is also a Visiting Scholar with the University of Colorado at Boulder and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. To read more about her, click here.
Fun fact: Alicia is vegan, lives in Colorado with her husband (and many 4-legged animals), has co-authored a few books, cares about narrowing the racial and gender gaps in entrepreneurship and investing, and you can follow her on Twitter here!
Founder, Cruise Automation
A Kansan engineer at heart, Cruise (a self-driving car technology company) was acquired by General Motors for >$1 billion, where Kyle now
serves as President and CTO. Vogt is also the co-founder of Socialcam (acquired for $60 million), and Twitch.tv (acquired by Amazon for $970 million).
Fun fact: Kyle turned vegan when his wife, Tracey, founded an animal farm sanctuary called Charlie's Acres. They rescue farm animals who were abused or destined for slaughterhouses. Kyle figured that he shouldn't be eating them. Follow Kyle on Twitter here!
CEO, Stray Dog Capital
In 2015, Lisa founded Stray Dog Capital, a firm that invests in early-stage, mission-driven start ups that
serves to replace animal use in the supply chain. In her business management role for over 15 years, she has worked on businesses ranging from $350 million to $2.5 billion via Procter & Gamble and General Mills. Their 2nd fund closed at $27.2 million (Feb 2019).
Fun fact: Lisa is based in Kansas, together with her husband, 2 kids and 4 dogs. All who are vegan (unsure about the dogs though!). Lisa turned vegetarian (then vegan) after watching the PETA-produced documentary "Meet Your Meat". Whilst still at P&G, she pushed for the first vegan menu in P&G’s Cincinnati office!
Founder and first CEO, Google Ventures
As the founder and first CEO of Google Ventures (a +$3 billion fund), Bill oversaw the growth of his
team from 1 to 70+, across 7 offices, 2 continents, and 400 investments. Prior to GV, he was an entrepreneur of early web hosting pioneer Burlee.com, now part of Web.com. In 2017, Bill founded Section 32, a California-based venture fund with approximately $400 million under management.
Fun fact: Bill studied neuroscience at Middlebury College, and once worked in a biomedical lab at Duke University. He wanted to be a doctor, till his mentor at Duke University showed him a room full of medical students studying at the lunch room, and asked, "Which of these people look happy to you?" None of them did. He decided against that career choice.
CEO, Baleine & Bjorn Capital
Hailing from the Dee family who founded Smarties, under Liz's leadership (as co-president, alongside
her sister and cousin), Smarties rebranded and reached a new millenial audience previously untapped by the 70 year-old company. In 2016, Liz co-founded Baleine & Bjorn Capital to invest in companies that creates superior plant-based and cultured products.
Co-founder and Partner, PowerPlant Ventures
Many know T.K. from Veggie Grill success. The fast casual vegan restaurant launched in 2006, and
currently (2018) employs 750 people, and have 31 locations. In 2015, Pillan co-founded Powerplant Ventures, a $42 million growth equity fund to invest in “visionary entrepreneurs who are leveraging the power of plants to create disruptive businesses.”
Fun fact: T.K. has a mechanical engineering from MIT, and worked for 4 years in Cambridge Technology Partners, a computer systems firm, before starting his own company, Guidance Solutions. At Veggie Grill, <80% of the customers are omnivores. T.K. himself only became a vegetarian whilst building the fast-food plant-based haven.
Founding Partner, Fifty Years
Polish native Ela has an impressive track record that includes being the founder of impact.tech (a tech
community where purpose and profit meets) and Railsberry (a European rails developer conference), and being a co-founder of BASE CRM (a B2B SaaS tool) and Applicake (Ruby on Rails software house). Today, she's looks for investments that can be part of the Fifty Years portfolio.
Fun fact: Ela's an avid skier, dancer and passionate about creating supportive communities. If you would like to follow Ela's creative expression through her dancing, drawing and cooking, you can follow her on Instagram here.
Co-founder of Indie.Bio / Partner, BABEL Ventures
Ryan reflects the impact that can happen when an academic brain meets entrepreneurial spirit.
Having co-founded 6 companies, including Indiebio (a biology accelerator and early stage seed fund), where he and his team funded 68 biotech startups, including companies such as Memphis Meats and New Wave. Now at BABEL Ventures, the firm has made 11 investments through their $26 million fund with a thesis of solving issues through bio technology.
Fun fact: With a BSc in Biological Sciences (Warwick University), Masters in Bioscience Enterprise (Cambridge University) and a PhD Candidate at the Center for Regenerative Medicine (University of Edinburgh), Ryan has a deep understanding and breadth of knowledge to draw from for his investments. To connect with Ryan, click here.
Founder and CEO, Blue Horizons
A serial entrepreneur who has founded and sold several companies within various industries,
Roger is currently the founder of Blue Horizon Corporation and the affiliated Blue Horizon International Foundation. The corporation focuses on investing in scalable ventures that accelerates the global transition towards sustainable food and agriculture. The latter focuses on supporting the transformation of traditional meat and dairy factories into sustainable plant production facilities.
Fun fact: Roger is based in Zurich, Switzerland, and turned vegan after selling his company (prior to Blue Horizons).
Founder and CEO, FFN Ventures
Polish native Michal has held various positions in the world of e-commerce and investing. Most notably as CEO
of OLX Indonesia, Michal established OLX as a clear market leader of horizontal classifieds. KKN Ventures focuses on deploying capital and supporting plant-based food tech companies in the Asia Pacific region.
Fun fact: In 2015, Michal took a 1-year sabbatical to spend time with his wife and daughter. They moved to Bali where he enrolled his daughter into the Green School (an international school that educates students on sustainability via a purpose-driven curriculum).