Seafood processor Vinh Hoan takes stake in cell-based fish firm Avant
Vietnamese seafood processor Vinh Hoan Corporation (VHC) has announced a strategic investment in Hong Kong-based cultivated fish start-up Avant Meats.
VHC will become a shareholder in Avant after agreeing to acquire Vinh Technology, which was incorporated in Singapore and holds a minority interest in Avant.
As part of the deal, VHC will establish a strategic partnership with Avant to accelerate the commercialisation of cultivated fish proteins by enabling the start-up to utilise its global sales network and industrial manufacturing capacity.
Last month, Avant raised $3.1 million in a seed funding round to accelerate research and development and bring its cultivated fish products to market in 2021.
“VHC is a global leader in aquaculture and functional proteins. VHC’s knowledge of customer requirements will provide valuable guidance for our product development and commercialisation,” said Carrie Chan, co-founder and CEO of Avant.
Under the terms of the agreement, VHC will also use the Vinh Technology division to access strategic opportunities in agri-tech, food tech and biotech-related to seafood and alternative proteins. Vinh Technology will join VHC’s three other divisions: Vinh Aquaculture, Vinh Foods and Vinh Wellness.
According to the two companies, the strategic partnership demonstrates how Avant’s biotechnology platform can collaborate with industry players, as it looks to offer a sustainable model to produce alternative proteins.
“We look forward to working with Avant to commercialise a new generation of cultivated fish proteins for food and functional applications,” said Khanh Truong, founder and chairwoman of VHC.
Tam Nguyen, CEO of VHC, added: “Avant offers a unique opportunity for us to diversify our future product portfolio to offer additional choices to address emerging consumer needs and trends.”