Benson Hill to grow with $25m series B

Missouri Technology Corporation, an investor in Benson Hill Biosystems since its seed round, has contributed to the agricultural technology developer's latest round.

Benson Hill Biosystems, a US-based developer of genetics technology for the agricultural industry, received $25m in series B funding on Tuesday from investors including public-private partnership Missouri Technology Corporation.

Venture capital firms Lewis & Clark Ventures and Prelude Ventures co-led the round, while Fall Line Capital, S2G Ventures, Alexandria Venture Investments, Cultivation Capital, iSelect Fund, Mercury Fund, Middleland Capital, Prolog Ventures and TechAccel also took part.

Founded in 2012, Benson Hill has combined cloud computing, big data analytics technology and plant biology to develop CoreOS, a system that applies machine learning to the seed development process to help researchers find which seeds would be able to produce which genetic traits.

Matthew Crisp, CEO of Benson Hill Biosystems, said: “With this round of financing, our investor base is joined by a capable and strategically minded group of organizations that recognise the immense challenges and opportunities facing the food and agricultural industry.

“We need a new model of innovation that can accelerate crop improvement to meet our global food and energy needs, and we look forward to working with our stakeholders to ensure that Benson Hill delivers on our purpose, creating real change that benefits our industry and society.”

Missouri Technology Corporation initially invested in the company as part of a $1m seed round in 2013, together with Biogenerator, Helix Fund, North Carolina Biotechnology Center and undisclosed angel investors.

Middleland Capital led Benson Hill’s $7.3m series A round in 2015, which included Missouri Technology Corporation, Biogenerator, Mercury Fund, Prelude Ventures, Prolog Ventures, Alexandria Venture Investments, Cultivation Capital and TechAccel.


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