KBW Ventures, a UAE-based asset management company that targets direct investments in some of the world’s most highly sought-after private companies, and founded by Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed, has participated in a funding round for US-based Back to the Roots. The round was led by S2G Ventures and Acre Venture Partners, with John Foraker and Fund Good Jobs also participating.
Back to the Roots aims to make gardening accessible to growers of all experience levels and in all types of living environments. They also offer a variety of “ready-to-grow”and “ready-to-eat” products. The start-up founded in 2009, launched a pilot version of its seed packet programme in 100 The Home Depot stores. This coming spring, the programme is branching out to The Home Depot stores across the US and will be launching nationwide in Albertsons and H-E-B supermarkets.
Commenting on the funding, Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed said, “There’s no better testimony on why KBW Ventures invested in Back to the Roots than the story of how I met Nikil and Alejandro. I was a customer, literally, I bought a few of their grow kits and I had posted about how great their products are on my Instagram story. Soon, through a dear friend Caroline Love, an introduction was made and this happened to coincide with their funding round. There is no greater sales pitch than a positive spirit, and enthusiastic hyper-qualified founders with a passion to do what they’re doing, and doing it super well judging by their numbers.”
KBW Ventures focuses its investments on sustainability and plant-based innovation. Prince Khaled has emerged as one of the most prominent global investors in the sustainable food movement, with investments previously made in start-ups such as BlueNalu, Memphis Meats, and Rebellyous Foods.
Co-founder and Co-CEO Nikhil Arora said, “Our investors aren’t just investing in Back to the Roots, they’re investing in a future of gardening where every kid can experience the magic of growing their own food and learning about where it comes from. We are building the garden brand for a new generation and we’re grateful for our investor’s continued support as we work to bring our products and mission into every home and classroom in the country.”
Back to the Roots will use the funds to scale up national distribution and marketing for their seed packet line, as well as support the continued growth of its small-space gardening kits.