Analyst and investor event highlights company’s opportunities and differentiators as a leader in vertical farming and as a consumer packaged goods company
ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 22, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Kalera Public Limited Company (Nasdaq: KAL, “Kalera” or the “Company”), a vertical farming company, outlined its new strategy and path to profitability for analysts and investors during a virtual event held today.
“We have established the foundational elements and gained the key learnings required to be a leader in this space,” said Jim Leighton, President and Chief Executive Officer of Kalera. “We have paid our tuition and earned our degree, not only as a vertical farming company but also as a branded CPG company with the largest national footprint and growing international presence that is ready for monetization.”
Kalera’s indoor vertical farming operations use 95 percent less water and 99 percent less land than traditional farming to grow its leafy greens, which are cleaner, more nutritious and more flavorful than greens grown to be shipped thousands of miles. Kalera’s farms serve customers within a 300-mile radius, so their products are always fresh, always local and always available.
Leighton told analysts and investors that Kalera is transitioning to a consumer packaged goods (CPG) platform, which is unique in controlled environment agriculture. The company is driving toward profitability, and will grow pragmatically while focusing on capital efficiency, increasing revenue and technology. He said Kalera’s mission to be the recognized leader in locally grown, cleaner, tastier and more nutritious produce is supported by eight key differentiators:
- Global footprint
- Full technology stack
- Consumer oriented
- Capital efficiency
- Always local, always fresh, always available
- Full spectrum of leafy greens
- A team with both technology and CPG experience
- Publicly traded
Aric Nissen, the company’s Chief Marketing Officer, added that the Kalera brand is an important and increasingly valuable asset as it wins shelf space, wins market share and earns a price premium. Kalera’s retail store footprint has grown to over 1,300 locations this month, and over 1,400 locations next month. Nissen also introduced a new Kalera logo in the company’s signature green color with a growing leaf forming part of the K. New packaging and campaigns with the new visual identity are targeted for launch in 4Q.
Austin Martin, President North America, said Kalera’s immediate focus is to bring existing farms to cash flow positive through topline and bottom-line growth by the end of 2023. The company also plans to shift more of its product mix from the foodservice channel to retail and expand its product mix to higher-margin loose leaf lettuces, herbs and microgreens rather than all full head lettuces.
The product line extensions will maximize Kalera’s revenue potential and farm capacity utilization, according to Chief Financial Officer Fernando Cornejo. Current operating farms’ revenue potential of approximately $49 million will grow to approximately $72 million, including new farms that are expected to begin operations in the fourth quarter.
International growth will occur through a capital light business model that utilizes joint ventures, partnerships and licensing fees, according to Dr. Henner Schwarz, President International & Chief Strategy Officer. Local partners will provide financing to develop the farms while Kalera runs the farms’ design, construction and operation.
Dr. Jade Stinson, Co-Founder and President of Vindara, Inc., a subsidiary of Kalera, highlighted Kalera’s vertical integration all the way back to the seeds. Vindara creates seeds specifically designed for use in vertical indoor farms. She said today’s genetic varieties most consumers know have been optimized for transportation and pest resistance, not nutrition and flavor. Vindara’s seeds amplify yields, appearance, nutrition and flavor, she said, and it’s done entirely through analytics, not gene editing or GMOs.
Leighton concluded the event by highlighting Kalera’s investment opportunity. “Ours is an exciting industry on the cusp of significant growth that can be part of the solution to real problems in the world,” he said. “Our products are of the highest quality and are grown locally and sustainably with superior technology – so much so, we call them ‘better than organic.’ We’re building strong customer relationships leveraging our CPG platform, and we have an excellent team with technological and food company expertise. We are disciplined and focused on achieving predictable, reliable, sustainable, profitable growth. I’m excited about our short and long-term potential, and I believe now is a great time to invest in Kalera as we enter this next phase. I truly believe Kalera is at an inflection point. All the pieces are now in place for this rocket to lift off.”
A replay of Kalera’s virtual analyst and investor event is available on the company’s website at https://investors.kalera.com/events/event-details/kalera-investor-day-event-2022
As a leader in controlled environment agriculture, Kalera is driven by our belief that vertical farming can play an important role in securing access to fresh produce for a growing world population facing climate change and concerns about the future of traditional farming. Through our proprietary technology, we sustainably grow local, delicious, nutrient-rich, pesticide-free, non-GMO leafy greens year-round. Our automated, data-driven, hydroponic vertical farms produce higher yields and, use 95% less water, and 99% less land than traditional farming. Sold under the Kalera brand, our leafy greens are “better than organic” and priced competitively, always with the end consumer in mind. Kalera is headquartered in Orlando, Florida with farms in Orlando; Atlanta, Georgia; Houston, Texas; Denver, Colorado; and Kuwait, with additional farms under development. More information is available at www.kalera.com.