U2’s Bono, The Edge Invest in Seed Round for Food Tech Company

December 8, 2016

Ireland-based food and bio-tech company, Nuritas, has confirmed that U2 band members Bono and The Edge are two investors included in the company’s second and latest funding round which gained €2 million earlier this year. The company also announced plans to triple its workforce in Ireland this coming year to more than 60 as part of a wider expansion plan that includes expanding its U.S.-based operations after the opening of its first U.S. office this year in San Francisco.

Bono and The Edge have been revealed as two in a field on investors involved in the latest round including New Protein Capital, Acdeng Property, and Salesforce founder and CEO Marc Benioff.

Founded in 2014 by mathematician and computational biologist, Dr. Nora Khaldi, the company which is based in Dublin, Ireland, and which was awarded Forbes’ Thrive Accelerator award, uses artificial intelligence, deep learning, and DNA testing to identify food components called peptides that impart specific health benefits.

Emmet Browne, former managing director at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals in Ireland and regional president at Pfizer who was key in the integration of Pfizer nutrition with Nestlé in 2012, was named Nuritas’ chief executive in early 2015.

“I was told this was impossible and I decided not to listen,” Dr. Khaldi told the Irish Times. “I built a team who believe in what we do and together we made it happen. We have discovered and patented some incredible life-changing ingredients and we will discover many more.”

The company has a range of areas of focus include anti-microbial, anti-ageing, anti-inflammation, muscle recovery, stroke, and diabetes, and has a revolutionary peptide that has been scientifically validated and in the process of being patented that has the potential to prevent Type 2 Diabetes. Over the coming 18 months the company will be initiating a series of clinical trials which could lead to the peptide being included in food ingredients as early as 2020.

“Using cutting-edge technology and really smart approaches to identify disease-beating peptides in food is something that has never been done before,” said The Edge while speaking at Nurtias’ headquarters in Dublin. “To see this team unlock what nature has already created for the betterment of mankind, it’s just incredible. We want to bring forward and support innovative, world-changing ideas so this is a perfect fit.”

Nuritas raised its first seed round of funding in October 2015 in a round led by Singapore-based New Protein Capital and a range of investors including Silicon Valley angel investor Ali Partovi, an early stage investor in both Facebook and Dropbox.

“We are delighted to collaborate with such like-minded and visionary investors to help us accelerate the discovery revolution that we have already started. We share the same vision,” said Browne at the time.

Speaking in regard to the company’s latest fundraising round and the involvement of Bono and The Edge, Dr. Khaldi said, “We aim high and think outside the box at Nuritas which is something that Bono and the Edge have done throughout their careers. We are delighted to have them join the Nuritas family and embrace our mission of improving the health of billions of people around the world.”

Lynda Kiernan

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