MOREHEAD AppHarvest announced today it has closed an $11 million corporate funding round, as it expands operations to support indoor farms across Central Appalachia. The company’s first project — a 2.76-million-square-foot facility in Morehead — is under construction and will begin operations later this year.
Combined with the company’s prior corporate funding rounds, including project financing, AppHarvest has attracted $120 million of investment into Appalachia in just two years. Participants in this round include the following:
- Equilibrium, which provided nearly $100 million in project financing for the Morehead facility.
- Existing investor ValueAct Capital’s ValueAct Spring Fund
- Existing investor Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund
- Blake Griffin Enterprises
Utilizing cutting-edge technologies and aligning with nature, AppHarvest’s Farming Now movement means growing far more food using far fewer resources. The company promotes permanent sustainability advances in American agriculture and is building some of America's largest indoor farms to grow non-GMO, chemical-free tomatoes to be distributed to the top 25 U.S. grocers.
With its vision to create America’s AgTech capital in Appalachia, AppHarvest is a Benefit Corporation and has been recognized for its focus on social good, providing better produce, better farming practices and better jobs. AppHarvest’s controlled environment agriculture facility in Morehead will create 285 full-time permanent jobs along with the 100 construction jobs already created. The dedicated construction staff already has 20 acres of the 60-acre facility under glass.
AppHarvest Founder and CEO Jonathan Webb: “Our region is mobilizing to become America’s AgTech capital. The national and international support for our mission shows the degree of interest in working with Appalachia. We’re excited to lead agriculture forward and help our friends and neighbors create a more resilient economy.”
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear: “AppHarvest is an amazing agri-tech company. Kentucky is eager to expand our agri-tech infrastructure, and we are so pleased to start out on this journey with Jonathan and the team at AppHarvest, growing nutritious food and nearly 300 jobs in Eastern Kentucky that our people need and deserve.”
Equilibrium Chairman Dave Chen: “Scalability is now the biggest challenge in the controlled environment agriculture space. We see significant demand across retailers, foodservice and consumers for fresh, safe, and local foods. In the next decade, the food sector will be transformed by technology and move towards climate-resilient infrastructure. Equilibrium partners with and invests in the growth of the best-in-class advanced technology greenhouse operators in North America. We are proud to be investors in AppHarvest and of our commitment to the Kentucky greenhouse and AppHarvest’s future greenhouse sites. Equilibrium and our partners are well positioned to meet both the growing market demands and our sustainability challenges.”
ValueAct Capital Founder and Chairman Jeffrey W. Ubben: “We are very excited about the impressive progress made by Jonathan, his team and the communities involved in Kentucky. AgTech is a promising way to address both social and environmental challenges facing our society, and AppHarvest is leading with win/win solutions. We salute the pioneering work being done by the company and are excited to participate in its future.”
Cooley Partner Derek Colla: “Jonathan is an unstoppable force continually working to achieve his goals. It’s remarkable to see what he has already accomplished, and it’s a pleasure for me and the Cooley team to work with him in transforming the Central Appalachian economy and the fresh produce supply system in the United States.”