Nasekomo Secures €8 Million to Drive Robotized, AI-assisted Insect Bioconversion Expansion in Europe

11 Jan 2024

Sofia, Bulgaria | 11.01.2024 – Nasekomo, the European scale-up with operations in France and Bulgaria, is proud to announce the successful closing of its Series A financing round, securing €8 million in growth capital. The investment, led by Invenio Partners, a private equity fund focusing on the SEE region, alongside several high-net-worth individuals, comes only a month after Nasekomo’s strategic partnership with Siemens.

Nasekomo is primed to leverage this substantial capital infusion to launch an extensive network of cutting-edge insect bioconversion facilities across Europe, with an eye towards expanding onto additional continents in the near future. The first franchised factory, serving as Nasekomo’s second facility after the successful launch of its industrial demonstration center near the capital Sofia, will also be located in Bulgaria, in partnership with a local entrepreneur, starting operations in 2025. Currently the company is exploring opportunities in Romania as well.

The company’s mission is to play a pivotal role in advancing the industrialization of insect farming for high-quality protein production, addressing global protein demand, food access challenges, and sustainability issues in feed production. Insect protein, a sustainable alternative, follows a circular production model, promoting circular economy practices in farming and the food and beverage industry.

Established in 2017 by serial entrepreneurs Xavier and Olga Marcenac and biologist Marc Bolard, Nasekomo is driven by a commitment to creating a sustainable business with a positive mission. The founders aspire to pioneer proprietary robotized, AI-assisted technologies that will revolutionize the manufacturing of feed by delivering higher-quality, sustainably produced protein, aligning with the dynamic needs of the global agricultural landscape.

Xavier Marcenac, co-founder and co-CEO of Nasekomo, expressed his pride in the company’s accomplishments and its strategic partnership with Invenio, stating, “We firmly believe that our collaborative efforts will lead to the successful realization of our ambitious vision – to accelerate the growth of the insect industry by providing the picks and shovels to newcomers which in our case means genetically selected seed larvae and our end-to-end bioconversion factory technology.”

Co-founder and co-CEO Marc Bolard added, “Our objective is to enable insects to positively impact our food chain in nutrient availability, quality and sustainability. To do so, we need to attain the highest level of standardization and process optimization in our upcoming network of franchised factories through genetics, automation, digitalization, AI-native solutions, and interconnected operations.”

Stanislav Nikolaev, Partner and COO at Invenio Partners, who will become Board Member of Nasekomo, added: “The biotechnology industry, with its inherent sustainability, is well-positioned for rapid and substantial expansion, presenting an exclusive opportunity for investors seeking returns in the realm of sustainable production. This investment in Nasekomo underscores our commitment at INVENIO Partners to support industry pioneers using the latest technologies to enhance their production processes.”

In a recent development, Nasekomo signed an agreement with technology leader Siemens for a strategic partnership focused on the digitization of the insect industry.

About Nasekomo: Nasekomo is a European scale-up dedicated to advancing insect bioconversion for sustainable high-quality protein production. Established in 2017, the biotechnology company is committed to addressing global agricultural challenges through innovative solutions, leveraging cutting-edge AI technologies, robotics and digitalized solutions. Through Fly Genetics, its joint venture with Groupe Grimaud, a world leader in animal genetics selection, it has developed a sophisticated selection program, empowering its partners to produce enhanced premium insect protein on an industrial scale. Rooted in its core activities, the company employs a circular model that has the potential to inspire and elevate sustainability practices across other industries.

About INVENIO Partners: INVENIO Partners manages a private equity and growth equity fund INVENIO Partners Fund II SCSP focused on investments in Southeast Europe. INVENIO Partners has experience in promoting and helping companies realize their full potential and enhance their performance by providing growth capital, strategic guidance, and operating support to strong management teams. INVENIO Partners discovers companies with a solid track record and potential for a leadership position in their respective industry with competitive business models and an experienced management team. The fund is supported by the European Investment Fund as its anchor investor, while also bringing onboard multiple reputable investors, including among others two of the leading pension fund managers in Bulgaria.