SAN DIEGO, March 28, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Radicle, an acceleration fund dedicated to growing early stage agricultural and food technology startups into proven industry leaders, today announced the appointment of Kieran Furlong, Salim Rayes and Michael Totora to its venture partner network. Radicle’s newest venture partners bring expertise in primary technology and business areas to its growing global Ag-focused network.
The new venture partners join an elite group of corporate, academic and industry leaders around the globe working with Radicle to drive the future of agriculture. Radicle aims to solve growers’ greatest productivity, sustainability and quality challenges by investing in technology innovators focused on genomics and plant sciences, seed tech, biologicals, digital Ag, and disruptive or novel farm systems.
“Our venture partner network is an integral part of how we help our Ag and food innovators accelerate bringing their technologies to market. Adding these industry leaders to Radicle’s global platform of Ag experts, researchers and successful entrepreneurs will ensure our portfolio companies stay focused and meet their business milestones,” said Kirk Haney, CEO and managing partner, Radicle. “Our venture partners work closely with the Radicle team to give our entrepreneurs the foundation of strategic advice and mentorship they need to thrive.”
Kieran Furlong brings a wealth of international experience from both large chemical companies and biotech/cleantech startups. A Finistere Ventures entrepreneur in residence, Furlong’s current focus is on the application of biological to crop protection and European AgTech advancements. Previously, he led the business development activities at Virent including partnering with The Coca-Cola Company in the development of a 100 percent bio-based PET bottle. At Solzyme (now TerraVia), an algae biotechnology company, he helped build the company’s manufacturing supply chain and launch its first commercial product. Early in his career, he spent a decade in a range of technical and commercial roles around the globe in the chemical industry with ICI and Johnson Matthey. Kieran earned a degree in Chemical Engineering from University College Dublin, Ireland and an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University.
Salim Rayes, a proven entrepreneur in the food and beverage space, provides insight on how to link business vision to operational strategy while ensuring customer satisfaction and stakeholder confidence. As general manager of Alpina Foods, his results-oriented, high-energy business acumen continues to drive the company’s growth. Rayes has successfully led and scaled several startup companies, as well as effectively managed turnarounds in the global food and beverage space. Prime examples include: Avalon Beverage Company (a partnership with PepsiCo), NFPC (a leading food and beverage company in the United Arab Emirates with over $400 million in sales), CRB a division of Giant Eagle supermarkets (a leading family-owned $9 billion enterprise), and Bloom Natural Foods (a healthy snacking startup). Rayes earned his bachelor’s of science degree in biology from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Michael Totora offers extensive experience navigating operational obstacles and opportunities by bringing innovative solutions to market through pragmatic applications that drive value for growers. Under his leadership as president and CEO, Agricen has established itself as a market leader in the delivery of biocatalyst technologies for efficient and sustainable plant nutrition. During his tenure, Agricen has evolved its core technology into new commercial products and categories, while expanding into new international markets with distribution across three continents. Prior to joining Agricen, Totora was a management consultant at the firms ZEFER and C-Change. He earned a bachelor’s of science degree in ocean engineering from Florida Atlantic University.
“Radicle has a unique model to accelerate companies, which is attracting some of the most innovative technologies in Ag and food tech,” said Kieran Furlong, Finistere Ventures.
Founded in 2016 by AgTech venture capital firm Finistere Ventures, Cloud Break Advisors and an alliance of top Ag industry leaders, including Bayer Crop Science, DuPont Pioneer and OurCrowd, Radicle offers a specialized platform to incubate high-quality AgTech companies that can solve global farming problems.
Radicle is an acceleration fund backed by leading AgTech investors including Finistere Ventures, Bayer Crop Science, DuPont Pioneer and OurCrowd. Radicle carefully selects innovative Ag and food tech startups for investment, ensuring that powerful, disruptive technologies reach their full potential. We provide a fertile environment for visionaries in the Ag space, not just to grow but to flourish. Our proprietary platform is the only one of its kind in the agriculture industry, filling a huge void in the market by identifying the most innovative technologies and accelerating them with a range of value-creation initiatives. To learn more, visit radicle.vc.
Media Contacts: Erica Camilo Connexa Communications for Radicle C: 610.639.5644
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