Eat Well Investment Group Inc. (CSE: EWG) (OTC: EWGFF)
Eat Well Investment Group Inc. (CSE: EWG) (OTC: EWGFF), headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, is a publicly traded vertically integrated plant-based foods company combining the best of agribusiness, foodtech, and CPG brands to supply the world with innovative, delicious, and better-for-you foods. The company supplies Beyond Meat, Ingredion, Nestle, General Mills and more.
Eat Well's management team has an extensive record of sourcing, financing and building successful companies across a broad range of industries and maintains a current investment mandate on the health and wellness industry. The team has financed and invested in early-stage venture companies for more than 25 years, resulting in the ability to construct a portfolio of opportunistic investments intended to generate superior risk-adjusted returns. Eat Well's strategic advisory board includes pioneers in the plant-based foods industry, including HRH Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of KBW Ventures, and Jeff Dunn, CEO of Bolthouse Farms who previously held senior leadership positions at both Campbell Soup Company and The Coca Cola Company.
The company's plant-based investment thesis is centered on growing its seed-to-market operations, which include raw ingredients, processing, pulse fractionation, unique IP and premium consumer packaged goods (CPG). Eat Well Group is building a unique ecosystem that can supply these essential cornerstone needs for society. The company has plant-based foods and nutrition experts specializing in the latest science and original thinking for what consumers want most – high quality and affordability in healthy, clean and simple products.
Eat Well focuses on intellectual property, product portfolio development and long-term value creation for stakeholders in a rapidly expanding industry. As an emergent sector globally, plant-based foods represent a double-digit annual growth category, with more than 35% of the world's supply of pulse proteins coming from Canada.
On July 31, 2021, Eat Well Group acquired Belle Pulses Ltd., one of the top pulse processors in Canada. Belle Pulses has been operating for over 40 years and had over $60 million in sales in 2020. The company counts a broad range of customers in over 35 countries, including global strategic food companies and major ingredient distributors. Currently, Belle produces nearly 100,000 tons of fully traceable seed and product, yielding over 26,000 tons of pure plant protein.
Eat Well also owns 100% of Sapientia Technology Inc. Led by Dr. Eugenio Bortone – one of the world's preeminent food scientists and extrusion processing experts and the inventor of Frito-Lay's Twisted Cheetos – Sapientia has filed four patents around the "protein curl" and crispy-puff-style snack. By focusing on texture and crunch, Sapientia's patents solve one of the major problems that large scale snack food companies have struggled with for years – how to offer appealing texture and flavor in a guilt-free, not fried, natural and healthy alternative to the majority of snack food products available today.
Eat Well owns a 51% share of Amara Organic Foods, with an option to acquire additional ownership up to 80 percent. Amara, one of the fastest-growing baby food brands in America, is a food technology company that uses science and proprietary IP that locks in taste and texture to make healthy, organic, non-GMO, plant-based, convenient baby and children's food possible for modern-day families. From baby food to toddler food and beyond, Amara is driven by the belief that setting kids on the right path from a young age will help them live better, feel better and think better for the rest of their lives. Amara's revenues have grown by more than 400% since January 2021, and the brand's success has drawn media coverage from business news outlets including Forbes and TechCrunch.
According to an August 2021 report from Bloomberg Intelligence, the plant-based foods market is expected to experience explosive growth, comprising up to 7.7% of the global protein market by 2030 at a value of over $162 billion, up from $29.4 billion in 2020. Bloomberg notes that plant-based alternatives are here to stay, and that consumption will grow rapidly. Plant-based food sales in 2020 grew twice as fast as overall food sales, according to Polaris Market Research.
Pulse proteins (fava, yellow pea, etc.) are a foundational ingredient to most plant-based foods due to their high protein content and their readily available, affordable supply.
Many analysts view the food tech market as similar to the early days of the Internet in that plant-based foods represent a worldwide secular trend of steady growth and potential that will revolutionize the way society functions and people experience nutrition.
The sector continues to experience significant M&A transactions. Recently, Sol Cuisine was acquired by PlantPlus Foods LLC, a major South American protein producer, in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $126 million, or 6x revenue.
Marc Aneed is President and Director of Eat Well Group. His 20-year career in CPG started at The Quaker Oats Company/PepsiCo, where he worked on iconic brands like Gatorade. He previously was at Glanbia PLC, a global nutrition company, where he led Amazing Grass, a leading plant nutrition and supplement company with over $100 million in retail sales. He also led Glanbia's Sports Nutrition brands in North America with over $750 million in retail sales. Mr. Aneed has launched dozens of successful consumer products, driving over $1 billion in collective retail sales.
Mark Coles is the company's Chief Investment Officer. He is a veteran CPG senior executive specializing in the plant-based foods sector. For the past decade, Mr. Coles has spearheaded global plant-based start-up initiatives, culminating in a 2020 acquisition by an international New York Stock Exchange-listed food ingredient company. He has over 25 years of experience in CPG-focused strategy, mergers and acquisitions and project financing.
Patrick Dunn is Eat Well Group's Vice President, Finance. He is the founding partner of Dunn, Pariser & Peyrot and has a track record of building highly successful agribusinesses throughout North America and other international markets. As a testimony to his business portfolio work, Mr. Dunn and his firm have won multiple industry awards for accounting, finance and business management.
Barry Didato is the company's Vice President, Strategy. He is focused on the development of strategic revenue channels, sales partnerships, and international distribution for Eat Well Group. Mr. Didato brings extensive strategic sales capabilities and an extensive network of contacts in the industry to the company. Prior to joining Eat Well Group, he served for over 18 years as a senior advisor for several ultra-high net worth family offices and numerous innovative wellness, nutrition, medical, and food businesses.
Strategic Advisory Board
HRH Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of KBW Ventures, is a firm supporter of clean energy and the humane treatment of animals. He is also a vocal supporter of the private sector in the Middle East. A member of the Saudi Arabian Royal Family, Prince Khaled was born in Stanford and spent his youth in Riyadh under the mentorship of his father, philanthropist HRH Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud, Chairman of Kingdom Holding Company. He is also the Founding Chairman of KBW Investments and serves across several boards. He invests in an array of successful but diverse global businesses – from promising technology startups to established companies. Today, with holdings on three continents, Prince Khaled stands at the gateway between the Middle East's evolving economies and the Western world. Consistently, Prince Khaled's focus is on ventures and ideas at the intersection of innovation and economic growth.
Jeff Dunn has over 30 years of experience in agriculture and packaged food, including senior leadership positions with Bolthouse Farms, Campbell Soup Company and The Coca Cola Company, among others. He is an Operating Partner at Butterfly and focuses primarily on the agriculture & aquaculture and food & beverage product sectors. Prior to joining Butterfly, Mr. Dunn was the President of the Campbell Fresh division of Campbell Soup Company from 2015 to 2016, where he was in charge of building Campbell's scale and accelerating its growth in the rapidly expanding packaged fresh segments and categories across the retail perimeter.