Jay-Z has officially invested a quarter of a billion dollars ($250 million) in SIMULATE, which is a plant-based chicken company. This follows SIMULATE’s $50 million in funding it earned earlier this month.
The investment fund leading the way is called SEVEN SEVEN SIX, and was created by Alexis Ohanian, the founder of Twitter. Other investors including Marcy Venture Partners, Jay Brown (CEO of Roc Nation) and Larry Marus (venture capitalist).
SIMULATE was founded in 2018 by then 19-year-old Ben Pasternak. Their goal is to create the perfect plant-based, environmentally-friendly chicken, with input from customers that follows a model that’s used in the tech space for software updates.
“Historically our food system has rejected the use of technology, resulting in a system that is highly inefficient and primitive,” says Pasternak. “This new funding will be used to create and protect the intersection of technology and nutrition.”
SIMULATE is often referred to as the “Tesla of chicken. They launched their first iteration of NUGGS through a direct-to-consumer model in 2019. The following year SIMULATE launched NUGGS in over 5,000 retail stores across Canada,
As noted by VegNews, this isn’t Jay-Z’s first forray into the vegan market: “In 2019, Jay-Z helped plant-based startup Impossible Foods raise $300 million in a Series E funding round which also included celebrities such as Serena Williams, Trevor Noah, Katy Perry, Questlove, Jaden Smith, and will.i.am.” Later that year, “Jay-Z’s MVP led a $1 million investment round in Partake Foods, a vegan cookie brand created by former Coca-Cola executive Denise Woodward.