BrightFarms acquired by Cox Enterprises

Cox Enterprises has invested more than $1bn in sustainable businesses and technologies including taking a majority stake in BrightFarms in 2018 as part of its growing ‘cleantech’ investment portfolio.

Steve Bradley, vice president of cleantech for Cox, said the indoor farming segment has been an area of focus for its team for several years as the market exploded with investment and steadily growing consumer adoption.

“We were right about all these macro tailwinds, the only thing we missed is how fast the acceleration was going to happen,”​ Bradley told FoodNavigator-USA.

According to a report from S2G Ventures​, there has been approximately $1.8bn publicly invested into controlled environment agriculture companies in North America and Europe between 2013 – 2020. Last October, BrightFarms raised $100m in Series E funding​ to fuel its business.

‘I can very clearly see us being able to build a $1bn+ revenue business in this space’

With the support from Cox, BrightFarms is poised to become even more of a leader in the hydroponic indoor farming segment, according to Bradley.

“It’s time to go now, it’s time to put the full weight of Cox behind this and go accelerate growth and meet our customers’ and consumers’ needs,”​ said Bradley.

“I can very clearly see us being able to build a $1bn+ revenue business in this space. It’s not that hard to imagine us getting to that level and still meet a small percentage of the demand out there,”​ he added.

“With Cox behind us, we don’t need to go out and do fundraising anymore, we have a company that’s been around for 100 years who shares our values and our vision for the future… Things will move a lot faster,”​ BrightFarms CEO Steve Platt told FoodNavigator-USA.

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