This week, vegan brand Laird Superfood announced that it is closing a $10 million financing round, with funding provided entirely by Danone Manifesto Ventures (DMV)—the investment arm of food company Danone. Laird Superfood—which was founded by professional surfer and fitness guru Laird Hamilton—produces coconut milk powder-based vegan creamers enriched with medium chain triglycerides (MCT) oils and marine mineral complex Aquamin. “I’m so grateful to have such a strong, philosophically aligned partner like DMV on board as we look at developing the next phase of delicious, innovative, plant-based products for all to enjoy,” Hamilton said.
DMV’s investment—which builds on Laird’s $32 million funding round led by coworking company WeWork earlier this year—was made to bolster its portfolio with brands that meet the needs of the modern consumer. “Laird Superfood is a powerful brand with a unique story, and we are excited about our ability to seal this partnership, particularly in the current global environment,” DMV CEO Laurent Marcel said. “We believe it will result in future success with a foundation of mutual trust and shared values.”
In 2016, Danone closed a $12.5 billion acquisition of WhiteWave Foods—parent company of vegan brands Silk, So Delicious, Vega, and Alpro. It has since innovated its product portfolio to include additional vegan lines such as Good Plants (part of its Light & Fit brand) and a coconut milk-based version of its popular Oikos yogurt. Last year, Danone opened the largest vegan yogurt production plant in the country, an 180,000-square-foot facility in DuBois, PA.