Recent Deals – 17 August: Farmer’s Network, Furniture Rental and Electric Vehicles

How is cleantech investment responding to the pandemic? Is investment continuing or are innovators left on the shelf waiting for an upturn? Find out who is involved in the leading deals and which innovators are moving forward. 

Agriculture & Food 

Farmers Business Network, a provider of farm services and an e-commerce platform leveraging its membership’s farm data, raised $250 million in a growth equity round. The investment was received from BlackRock, Baron Capital Group, Balyasny Asset Management, Mandi Ventures, Lupa Systems, Ron Shaich, DBL Partners, Temasek Holdings, T. Rowe Price, GV, Expanding Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), and Fidelity Investments. The capital will be used to expand its Farmers First℠ FBN Direct℠ range of best value, direct-to-farm inputs including seed, crop protection and biologicals, which help farmers reduce their cost of production. It will also invest in continuing to build out its suite of cutting-edge FBN Crop Marketing and Financial Services solutions that help farmers maximize the value of their crops.   

Energy & Power 

Palmetto, a developer of software and hardware that provides homeowners with utility disaggregation information and control over their home energy costs, raised $29 million in a Series B round. Investors included Evergy Ventures, Arctern Ventures, Shell Ventures, Greycroft, Lerer Hippeau, Box Group, Falkon Ventures and the Leto Family Office. Founded in 2009, the company technology offers insights to reduce the cost of customer acquisition among other obstacles that have limited success in the overall sector. The funding will be used to grow product lines and expand into a wider range of services. 

Materials & Chemicals 

Arevo Labs, developer of 3D printed carbon fiber composite materials, raised $25 million in a Series B round led by Defy Partners and GGV Capital. Other investors include Khosla Ventures and Alabaster. The funding will be used to expand operations, and begin developing strong, lightweight parts for use in production applications. The announcement comes with the launch of a new 3D printer, Aqua 2, which can print large-format continuous carbon fiber components.  

Resources & Environment 

Feather, provider of furniture and home decor rental service, secured $30 million in debt financing from Credit Sussie. With this new round of finance, Feather will continue to further develop and expand its operations. In February 2020, the company had raised another $30 million Series B funding from Cobalt Capital to expand its reverse logistics infrastructure and scale into new markets. Feather is currently available in New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Orange County. 

Transportation & Logistics

Xpeng Motors, developer of smart electric vehicles, raised $400 million in growth equity from Qatar Investment Authority, Mubadala, and Alibaba. Funds are to be used to drive operations and expand internationally, with a U.S IPO in progress. In July 2020, Xpeng raised $500 million from Sequoia Capital China, Hillhouse Capital, Coatue Management, and Aspex Management to expand business reach within China. Xpeng designs, develops, and manufactures in-house EVs and EV charging technologies.  

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