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Other - MAY 8, 2019

Crop One Holdings launches vertical farm opportunity fund

by Released

Crop One Holdings (Crop One), a vertical farm operator through its FreshBox Farms brand, announced that it will sponsor its first “qualified opportunity fund (QOF)” in an Opportunity Zone.

“With this Opportunity Zone Fund, we are bringing scalable, vertical farming technology to Texas,” said Sonia Lo, CEO of Crop One Holdings. “The new farm will be environmentally conscious and produce fresh, locally-grown food that is healthy and affordable. Our expert staff of farmers, resource conservation specialists, and ag-tech leaders are changing the way we grow and enjoy food, and we are looking forward to providing great, fresh produce to the Austin-San Antonio area.”

The Vertical Farm Opportunity Fund #1 will invest in building and operating a new vertical farm in Texas (the Farm), to be located in a qualified Opportunity Zone in the Austin-San Antonio corridor. The Farm will primarily serve Austin (the number 11 largest city in the United States), and will have easy access to San Antonio (number 7), Houston (number 4) and the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex (number 9).

Vertical farming produces crops indoors, and ensures pesticide-free, optimal growing conditions. Crop One anticipates locating many of its future farms in Opportunity Zones that have potential for farm-to-table distribution, in locations that may range from rural to urban settings. These farms require that temperature, humidity, light, water and plant nutrients be provided in a controlled environment.

Crop One’s track record and its investment team’s more than 40 years of combined investing experience make it uniquely qualified to manage the building and operation of the Farm through the Fund. Its produce is already sold in over 35 grocery stores in the Northeast U.S through its FreshBox Farms brand. In 2018, Crop One entered into a joint venture with Emirates Flight Catering to build the world’s largest vertical farm in Dubai, which will begin production early 2020.

For this project, Crop One will be raising capital under a Regulation D 506(c) offering for the development of the Farm’s facilities and to fund business operations.

“With this Opportunity Zone Fund, we are bringing scalable, vertical farming technology to Texas,” said Sonia Lo, CEO of Crop One Holdings. “The new farm will be environmentally conscious and produce fresh, locally-grown food that is healthy and affordable. Our expert staff of farmers, resource conservation specialists, and ag-tech leaders are changing the way we grow and enjoy food, and we are looking forward to providing great, fresh produce to the Austin-San Antonio area.”

Vertical farming produces crops indoors, and ensures pesticide-free, optimal growing conditions. Crop One anticipates locating many of its future farms in Opportunity Zones that have potential for farm-to-table distribution, in locations that may range from rural to urban settings. These farms require that temperature, humidity, light, water and plant nutrients be provided in a controlled environment.

“With the creation of at least 75 new jobs in its initial phase, the Farm will have a positive economic impact on the local economy,” added Deane Falcone, Crop One chief science officer. “As with all of our farms, the Farm is expected to use 99 percent less water compared to conventional farming. Our products are pesticide-free, non-GMO, nutritious, and delicious, and because our produce can reach more than 17 million people within a 3.5-hour radius, we will be able to reduce food miles and food waste.”

Crop One’s track record and its investment team’s more than 40 years of combined investing experience make it uniquely qualified to manage the building and operation of the Farm through the Fund. Its produce is already sold in over 35 grocery stores in the Northeast U.S through its FreshBox Farms brand. In 2018, Crop One entered into a JV with Emirates Flight Catering to build the world’s largest vertical farm in Dubai, which will begin production early 2020.

For this project, Crop One will be raising capital under a Regulation D 506(c) offering for the development of the Farm’s facilities and to fund business operations.

Enacted as part of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Opportunity Zones were created by Congress to encourage social advancement and private investment in low-income communities to aid job creation and new business formation.

Investors in QOFs such as the fund are eligible for a range of tax benefits, including deferral of current capital gains, a tax reduction of up to 15 percent on current gains and no capital gains taxes on appreciation of the QOF interest if the interest is held for 10 years or more.

Through the fund, investors will partner with Crop One and participate in the rapidly emerging vertical farming sector while being eligible for these generous tax benefits.

 

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