Clean Meat Venture Wins Awards in Beijing and D.C.
Updated: Jan 27, 2019
Mission Barns was the first prize winner of the 2018 Dongsheng-Dao Ventures U.S.-China Entrepreneurship Competition.
Beijing, China/Washington, D.C., December 17, 2018 -- Dao Ventures, a Sino-US impact investment, advisory and acceleration services group of companies, has successfully concluded its 4th annual Dongsheng-Dao Ventures US-China Entrepreneurship Competition. The top winner out of the Competition, Mission Barns, went on to win additional accolade and cash prize at the Global Grand Final held in Beijing on December 13, 2018.
The Competition offers promising early and growth stage technology start-ups from around the world the opportunity to earn cash prizes, investments, mentoring, investor access, and office space in one of China’s top accelerators, Dongsheng Science and Technology Park that is located in Zhongguancun in Beijing, the equivalent of China’s Silicon Valley. Dongsheng has been one of Dao Ventures’ strategic partners in Beijing for venture acceleration services since 2015.
The first prize winner Mission Barns was founded in 2018 in Berkeley, California, by Eitan Fischer and David Bowman, former Director and Lead Scientist, respectively, of the clean meat division at Hampton Creek/JUST, with the goal of enabling delicious, affordable, scalable, and sustainable meat production by focusing on a component missing from current clean and plant-based meats: clean fat.
Aside from its cross-border and internationalization aspect, what particularly differentiates the annual Dongsheng-Dao Ventures US-China Entrepreneurship Competition is that it has included environmental and social impact as a key part of its evaluation criteria as guided by Dao Ventures.
Most of the 45 finalists and all the top winners from the past four years who advanced to the Beijing Grand Final were considered environmental and/or social impact ventures, and all the top winners received cash grant awards, travelling stipends and mentoring services from Dao Ventures.
Similar to last year, in addition to the Greater Washington region as the main venue, Dao Ventures was also focused on recruiting applicants from the Boston/Cambridge area where some of the well-known US institutions of higher education are concentrated, with the objective of attracting more aspiring young entrepreneurs across the Pacific. Dao Ventures also recruited applicants from Silicon Valley and Canada this year.
“As always, what we are looking from applicants are both a viable business model and its social and/or environmental impact. This is a critical moment for the US-China business relationship as the conventional relationship is being challenged and tested. We at Dao Ventures firmly believe that a proactive approach to catalyzing and promoting cross-border collaboration between the two largest economies in the world, with a focus on creating positive social and environmental impact via entrepreneurship and mutual benefit, is particularly needed at this juncture,” said Brian Christie, Senior Advisor at Dao Ventures.
With a balanced combination of business value proposition and environmental impact, though it was faced with fierce competition in China, Mission Barns, as represented by its co-founder Eitan Fischer, won a third prize and additional cash award at the Global Grand Final, aside from the $10,000 award prize it won at the Dongsheng-Dao Ventures US-China Entrepreneurship Competition on November 29, 2018 in the Greater Washington region where the venture's other co-founder David Bowman pitched.
“We are glad to see that Mission Barns has helped raise awareness of plant-based and clean meat alternatives in China throughout this Competition, given that this sector is still nascent in China and would need a lot of catalytic support,” said Albert Tseng, co-founder of Dao Foods International, a cross-border impact venture launched by Dao Ventures in collaboration with Moonspire Social Ventures and New Crop Capital in early 2018 to introduce innovative and climate-friendly protein products, primarily plant-based and clean meat (PBCM), into the Chinese market. Albert also served as one of the judges at the 2018 Dongsheng-Dao Ventures US-China Entrepreneurship Competition.