Deal Case Highlight Aqua Capital | Yes Synergy: Biotech/Agribusiness, Sustainable Animal Nutrition
Member Investor: Aqua Capital
Company: Yes Synergy
Industry-Sector: Agribusiness/ Animal Feed Additives
Antibiotics have been widely used in agriculture to enhance animal productivity since the 1950s, but their excessive use has exacerbated the rise of antibiotic-resistant germs in humans. In turn, the use of antibiotics for non-medical purposes has increasingly come under scrutiny in the last two decades.
Yes produces a low-cost alternative to antibiotics and as more countries are taking measures to restrict the use of antibiotics in agriculture, Yes is well positioned to continue developing its antibiotic-free additives and expand into new markets.
Aqua Capital invested US$29.4 million for a 73.7% stake in Yes in April 2016 to support research and development as a key driver of growth and innovation, decrease the company’s supplier concentration and mitigate other potential risks along its supply chain, and expand to markets outside of Latin America.
“Since Aqua’s investment, the company shifted from low-cost products with limited differentiation (e.g., mycotoxin binders and yeast derivatives) towards higher value-added products (e.g., immunomodulators and organic minerals). Higher value-added products accounted for 43% of sales in 2020, compared to 36% in 2016. Research and development of new products, protection of intellectual property, and partnerships with recognized Brazilian universities have been key drivers of this growth—the company registered eight new patents and over 300 products in the last four years.”
ESG IN FOCUS
In addition to standard fund- and company-level ESG practices, as a direct result of Aqua’s efforts, Yes started monitoring the use of energy and its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions using the GHG protocol tool developed by the World Resources Institute.
In terms of social impact, Yes implemented initiatives to improve transportation and occupational safety… download the full case study to read more.