HBAN Food Investor Forum

By hban.org
Wednesday, 24th April 2019
Filed under: Events, Year2019

HBAN will hold the first Food Investor Forum of 2019 on 21st May in Dublin . The half-day event will bring together current HBAN Food Syndicate Investors, other HBAN Investors interested in the food sector and New Investors interested in getting involved in food investing. It will also bring together other key stakeholders in the food industry including Kerry Group, Finistere (a later stage US and Irish Food and Agtech focused VC), and leaders of successful scaled Food companies to share their market insights and experience. A selection of 4 food sector entrepreneurs from across the broad food supply chain (from production, packaging and distribution) will pitch to investors to raise investment.

To register for this event please click here

While Ireland is recognized globally for the quality of its food produce, and food exports represent a significant portion of economic activity in Ireland, there are many challenges in establishing and scaling food businesses in Ireland, not least accessing investment.

HBAN as the all island initiative for Angel Investing, which is supported by Enterprise Ireland, Intertrade Ireland and Invest NI, has facilitated over €90 million of direct private seed investment into over 400 Irish Startup Businesses since 2008. Investment in food business however have made up less than 5% of this.

The purpose of this food investor forum is to bring together Angel investors from across the broad food sector in Ireland. Investors can span the wider macro environment of the Irish Food Industry (taking into account the whole supply chain). The forum will hear from key stakeholders/enablers in the wider food industry at both early and latter stages and consider investment pitches from starting and scaling businesses in the food and food supply chain space.

Food Investor Forum Agenda

This half day event will have 3 strands

  • Insights- Key national stakeholders in the broad Irish food industry giving their insights into the current state of innovation and investment the food, food supply chain and agtech sectors, and the international opportunities for Irish businesses in this space
  • Pitching- 4 companies active in the food & beverage and packaging sectors pitching for investment
  • Funding for the food sector in Ireland - A facilitated group discussion with a cross section of investors on their insights into the pathways to successfully raising investment and scaling food production and food supply chain businesses internationally


8.30 – 9.00

Tea/Coffee – Networking  /  Exhibit by pitching companies

9.00 -  9.10

Julian Seymour – Welcome / HBAN Role in Food Investment
Stephen Twaddell – HBAN Food Syndicate Overview / Scene Setting

9.10 – 9.25

Kerry Group – How Kerry Taste and Nutrition work with Innovators Turning Insight into Action 

Éadaoin McCarthy - Director of Market Research & Consumer Connection

Éadaoin will give insights on food innovation in the ingredients industry and how Kerry Group work with Innovators in the food Industry. Specific areas to be addressed include;

  • Development of alternative proteins
  • Evolution of Food Categories
  • The role of technology in building towards food sustainability
9.25 – 9.40

Finistere – Agtech Investing In Ireland/Overseas

Donal Ryan – Investment Director

Donal will share his insights into the company types that are attracting the most interest in the broad agtech, food and food supply chain investment space, and the investment requirements and challenges inherent in scaling these businesses. 

9.40 - 10.00

Vit Hit War Story– Scaling FMCG Soft Drinks Internationally

Gary Lavin – CEO of Vit Hit 

Gary will share how he has turned a local brand into an international brand, scaling to multiple countries, delivering a 30% year on year growth rate and growing sales to 25M bottles per year since he originally established VitHit in 2008.

10.00- 10.10

European Angel Fund - EAF

Drew O’Sullivan – Serafina Capital

Drew will outline the scope of the EAF in providing matching funding to Angel Investments

10.30 – 10.45 COFFEE BREAK
10.45 – 12.00


4 investment pitches from starting and scaling innovative companies in the food industry: The companies pitching are:

  • Heavenly
  • Senoptica
  • Fiid
  • Borrisosleigh Bottling
12.00 – 12.30


HBAN Food Chair – Stephen Twaddell

HBAN Food Chair - Stephen Twaddell will lead the discussion to get investor perspectives on what has been presented both from the national stakeholders and potential investee companies


TASTING and Networking

About the HBAN Food Syndicate

The is an all island group of experienced investors from the food , drink, food supply chain and wider agritech sectors. The syndicate is interested in investing in truly innovative companies in the sectors mentioned above. These companies have a strong focus on export from an early stage, usually with early sales traction from key industry buyers.  In addition to capital investment, the syndicate members bring significant know-how in scaling international businesses from across the food industry spectrum