Alongside those investors, the Series A funding saw participation from Lowercarbon Capital, Teampact Ventures, ACE & Company and prominent world-class athletes such as former England rugby international, James Haskell, and a slew of French sport stars - rugby player, Antoine Dupont, handball player, Nikola Karabatic, and volleyball champion, Antoine Brizard.
This round, coupled with the equity and grants Entocycle has previously raised, brings the total funding the company has generated to date to over £10m (US$12.3m).
Founded in 2016 to accelerate a global shift to insects as a sustainable protein source in food and feed, Entocycle has built two pilot facilities in the UK and grown to 21 people at its headquarters in London. The company’s full farm design and build service enables large-scale food producers and waste management companies to convert organic waste into high-value insect proteins, fats, and fertilizers.
Entocycle said it will use the latest funds to expand the commercial roll-out of a suite of products and services, which are targeted at both established companies and new entrants into the insect industry globally.
In terms of what stage the commercial roll-out is at, Will Bisset, chief operating officer, Entocycle, told FeedNavigator: “We are ready to roll-out several products from our tech stack and are currently doing final beta testing on our [flagship product] Entosight Neo. We plan on creating a robust supply chain and to cement the high levels of interest we already have for these this year, creating a platform for maximum scalability in 2024. We are in commercial discussions with five companies over the first sales. We have also begun several large-scale projects in other geographies that will amount to full scale farms within 18 months.”
Entocycle will also look to hire additional talent, as it seeks to commercialize operations and make its products and services more accessible to the market:
“We are looking at an extensive hiring drive across all areas of the business. We want inquisitive and brilliant minds, people that share our vision for a more environmentally friendly future. From people with a skill set in technology or entomology, all the way through to commercially driven individuals."
According to a recent study by the WWF, the UK could replace 20% of its soy imports with insect protein by 2050.
Tracking farm productivity
Entosight Neo is a software and hardware package based upon an optical sensor that monitors and collects data on the health and productivity of a black soldier fly colony. The technology is designed to reduce the need for manual human processes such as weighing larvae, multi-step handling and inaccurate counting to result in higher-feed conversion rates, lower mortality, and larger insects on farms.
“This industry is all about accuracy and efficiency at scale. When you are dealing with billions of livestock you need to know how many are in the system to keep them in optimum conditions. Our equipment is fully patented and can provide answers for the toughest questions being asked of the industry currently, there are no other providers offering what we can. Putting it bluntly, humans aren't good enough, we need the precision and reliability of technology,” added Bisset.
Entocycle also manufactures and supplies fly rooms as a complete turnkey breeding solution to achieve optimal BSF breeding efficiencies and the highest possible egg yields. Its BSF factory farm solutions go from concept feasibility studies right through to design and commissioning.