Pymwymic is proud to announce investing in family-run RootWave, a pioneer in developing and marketing electrical weed control solutions that offer a scalable and sustainable alternative to chemical herbicides. Pymwymic (‘Put Your Money Where Your Meaning is Community’) has participated in the Series A investment round of ca. EUR 6.5m led by V-Bio Ventures (Belgium) and Rabo Food & Agri Innovation Fund (Netherlands), and joined by existing shareholders including Yield Lab Ireland.
21st-century agriculture faces multiple challenges, and one in particular is yield losses of global agricultural productivity. Weeds are responsible for at least 10 % of all yield losses, as they are competitors for crop and tree seedlings. The current global solution for weed and invasive plant control is the use of carcinogenic and toxic herbicides, damaging to humans, water, soil, plants, insects, and animals. Furthermore, the $30bn herbicides industry is under significant pressure due to herbicide-resistant weeds and increasing regulation and litigation, creating a clear market demand for alternative solutions. We are therefore proud to be investing in impactful, sustainable alternatives to weed control.
A company with family roots, led by father and son, RootWave’s technology is a leading solution for herbicide-free and effective weed control, contributing to more sustainable agriculture, a cleaner environment and a healthier food chain. RootWave’s technology uses electricity to kill weeds from the roots upwards. RootWave is a pioneer in developing this technology as a safe solution for various partners. The company is currently selling its RootWave Pro throughout Europe and is partnering with ag-machinery companies including Steketee/Lemken, SFM Technology and Small Robot Company.
The proceeds will enable RootWave to expand commercialisation of its RootWave Pro, a professional hand-weeder for spot weeding and treating invasive species, integrate its technology into automated agricultural weeders, and conduct further research into novel electricity-based weed killing applications. In connection with the financing, representatives of V-Bio Ventures, Rabo Food & Agri Innovation Fund, and Pymwymic will join the board of directors. “We are grateful for the support from our employees, existing board and shareholders. Together we will deliver innovative solutions that the market is urgently demanding.” Andrew Diprose, CEO of RootWave
RootWave is becoming part of a portfolio of impact companies in Pymwymic’s Healthy Ecosystems Impact Fund. Pymwymic is a frontrunner in impact investing for over 25 years and backed by 75 European families who are committed to mobilise capital for people and planet. Through its venture capital fund, Pymwymic invests in early to growth stage companies that seek to conserve and restore our ecosystems while generating an attractive financial return. The Healthy Ecosystems fund is backed by both Pymwymic members and institutional investors Van Lanschot Kempen and a.s.r. “We are proud to join RootWave on their mission to improve communities and the environment by offering a scalable and sustainable alternative to chemical herbicides”. Pieter Vis, Investment Manager of Pymwymic.
RootWave (www.rootwave.com) uses electricity to kill weeds as a sustainable and scalable alternative to herbicides. The technology is organic, sustainable, no-till and cost-effective. RootWave was launched in 2012 and is currently selling an award-winning professional hand weeder designed for growers, gardeners and groundskeepers to spot weed and treat invasive species; it is used across the world by contractors, municipalities, heritage sites, estates, football clubs, and farmers. RootWave has won numerous EU and UK grants to adopt its technology for agriculture and is working with several ag-machinery companies to develop automated solutions for specialty and broadacre crops. RootWave zaps weeds with zero chemicals and is improving the environment by offering a sustainable alternative to herbicides.
About V-Bio Ventures
V-Bio Ventures (www.v-bio.ventures) is an independent venture capital firm specialized in building and financing young, innovative life science companies. V-Bio Ventures was established in 2015 and works closely with Belgium-based VIB, one of the world’s premier life science institutes. The fund invests throughout Europe in start-up and early-stage companies with high growth potential focusing on technologies that provide transformational improvements in the biopharmaceutical, pharmaceutical, diagnostics and agricultural sectors. ‘We have been impressed by the determination and vision of RootWave’s management team, and by the deep innovation pipeline of the company. We strongly believe in the transformation RootWave can bring about in the weed control market and are excited to be part of this journey.’ Willem Broekaert, Managing Partner from V-Bio Ventures.
About Rabo Food & Agri Innovation Fund
Rabo Food & Agri Innovation Fund “RFAIF” (www.rfaif.com) is a captive venture capital fund of Rabobank, a global leader in providing international finance to the food and agriculture (F&A) sector. RFAIF leverages Rabobank’s extensive global network and sector knowledge to support the growth and success of start-up companies leading innovation across the food and agri supply chain. ‘We at Rabobank recognize the need for greater sustainable food production and technologies that not only support increase yields, but also safeguard the environment for future generations. We are very proud to invest in RootWave and our partnership is testament to our mission to support truly innovative emerging technologies that can make a true difference in how we produce food in a future-proof manner.’ Richard O’Gorman, Director of Rabobank’s Food & Agri Innovation Fund.
Pymwymic is a co-owned impact fund leveraging a peer-to-peer network and exchange of knowledge and expertise. With 25 years of experience in impact investing, we are a frontrunner investment cooperative of private investors who seek to make smart investments that serve people and planet. The Coop invests in impact driven enterprises through SDG themed sub-funds. Our first sub-fund is the Pymwymic Healthy Ecosystems Impact Fund (“PymHEIF”). The PymHEIF is a venture capital fund that invests in early to growth stage companies that seek to conserve and restore our ecosystems while generating an attractive financial return. We seek opportunities that have measurable impact and economies of scale, and take an active role in growing our portfolio companies to the next stage of maturity.
For more information please read the official press release here.