Impossible Foods Looks to Dominate Nascent Industry – and Save the World
July 18, 2019 | Blog

Impossible Foods Looks to Dominate Nascent Industry – and Save the World

Impossible Foods wants to change the world, or at least change the “meat” we eat.

The Silicon Valley firm’s flagship product, the Impossible Burger, is a ground beef substitute currently served in thousands of restaurants around the world – from Michelin star venues to Burger King drive-throughs. The firm is ramping up production and is being met with insatiable demand; restaurants have even reported trouble securing the product. Moreover, Impossible Foods has been the most visited company page on the SharesPost platform over the last six months.

Feet On The Street

Clearly something disruptive is happening, so we set out to compare this plant-based meat to the traditional, all-American burger. We visited locations serving Impossible Burgers near SharesPost’ HQ in downtown San Francisco using our feet-on-the-street approach to research. The result: The Impossible Burger gets faux beef right. In our informal side-by-side comparison of a real burger and an Impossible burger, we couldn’t tell the difference. Some of us even ordered extra sliders - “make it Impossible.”

Impossible Foods’ business strategy appears to be one with worldwide ramifications. The aggregate global market for animal protein (meat, poultry, and fish) is estimated to be valued at over $70 trillion – with a “T” – by 2025, according to Grand View Research. While any part of that figure could be substantial, Impossible is seeking to take the lion’s share. As it claims, Impossible wants to completely replace the millennia-old animal agricultural system.

The company’s goal also aligns with the environmental consciousness that is changing consumer behavior across the world. Impossible Burger creates 89 percent less emissions, uses 87 percent less water, and takes up 96 percent less land compared to the beef industry, according to company figures. With carbon-conscious millennials now the plurality of global consumers, Impossible may be poised to ride macro tailwinds. That said, the company has a long road ahead to sate the world’s varied palates. It has yet to release any poultry or fish substitutes and is currently facing bottlenecks in production.

Strong Investor Interest

To date, Impossible Foods has raised about $777 million, which includes three debt financings. Current investors include tradition venture capitalists Khosla Ventures, Gates Ventures, Viking Global, and GV, as well as celebrities including Serena Williams, Katy Perry, and Jay-Z.

The company does face real challenges. Impossible Foods is facing off with newly public Beyond Meat and food titans Kellogg, Tyson, JBS, and Nestle in the pursuit of capturing market share in this emerging vertical. Further, it’s important to remember Impossible is not the first mover in the space. Past attempts at imitation burgers have not achieved widespread acceptance among ever-shifting consumers. Still, the company appears to have products that are clearly whetting the appetite of consumers and investors.

SharesPost Research will be publishing an in-depth overview of Impossible Foods in the weeks to come– stay tuned.

James Cheap is a research analyst at SharesPost.

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Copyright SharesPost, Inc. 2020. All rights reserved.

PLEASE READ THESE IMPORTANT LEGAL NOTICES & DISCLOSURES

This article does not constitute an offer to provide investment advice or service. Registered representatives of SharesPost Financial Corporation do not (1) advise any member on the merits or prudence of a particular investment or transaction, or (2) assist in the determination of fair value of any security or investment, or (3) provide legal, tax, or transactional advisory services.

Securities referenced in this article may be offered by SharesPost Financial Corporation, member FINRA/SIPC. SharesPost Financial Corporation and SP Investments Management are wholly owned subsidiaries of SharesPost, Inc. Certain affiliates of these entities may act as principals in such transactions.

Investing in private company securities is not suitable for all investors. An investment in private company securities is highly speculative, involving a high degree of risk, and investors should be prepared to withstand a total loss of your investment. Private company securities are also highly illiquid and there is no guarantee that a market will develop for such securities. Each investment also carries its own specific risks and investors should conduct their own, independent due diligence regarding the investment, including obtaining additional information about the company, opinions, financial projections and legal or investment advice.

Accordingly, investing in private company securities is appropriate only for those investors who can tolerate a high degree of risk and do not require a liquid investment.

SharesPost, the SharesPost logo, My SharesPost, the SharesPost Index, and SharesPost Investment Management are all registered trademarks of SharesPost, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Copyright SharesPost, Inc. 2020. All rights reserved.