Spiber raises $311 million to help fund Iowa plant

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In Japan, protein fermentation firm Spiber has raised JPY 24.4 billion ($220 million) to help fund a previously announced production plant in Iowa. The financing was led by Carlyle, which holds a $91 million stake in the renewable fibers manufacturer, and also included Fidelity, Baillie Gifford and Cool Japan Fund Inc. Spiber simultaneously approved an additional JPY 10 billion ($91 million) capital raise through an extension of the value securitization structure executed as of December 28th, 2021 and arranged by Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities Co., Ltd., bringing the new capital total to JPY 34.4 billion.

Spiber’s Brewed Protein™ material is a biobased, biodegradable, and animal-free synthetic protein platform that can be used as substitutes for cashmere, wool, fur, leather, silk, and other animal and/or petroleum-based materials. Large-scale production is expected to begin in 2021 in Thailand, and in the US by 2023. 

Spiber will also have access to Carlyle’s industry experience, sustainability expertise, and network with luxury brands as well as the textile and material industries.