Stony Creek Colors raises $4.8 million in series B2 funding

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2022-12-02 06:24:18 – USA

Stony Creek Colors, a Springfield, Tennessee-based manufacturer of natural indigo dye, has closed a $4.8 million Series B2 funding round co-led by the company’s longtime partners, Lewis & Clark AgriFood and Levi Strauss & Co. To provide farmers and the textile industry with regenerative solutions, Stony Creek Colors will use the funding to enhance its farming infrastructure and color extraction method.

According to the USDA BioPreferred Program's certification, Stony Creek Colors is the only maker of 100% bio-based indigo on an industrial scale worldwide. Full traceability, all the way down to the farm level, is made possible by its vertically integrated business, which brands and consumers trust. As it moves closer to scale, the funding will enable Stony Creek Colors to improve upon the innovations that have been created and field-tested over the previous two years.

Sarah Bellos, Founder and CEO of Stony Creek Colors, said that Stony Creek Colors was formed on the premise of utilizing naturally existing compounds in plants, to solve fashion industry difficulties while giving farmers a profitable regenerative cyclical crop. In the past, they worked with Levi Strauss & Co. as a customer to develop significant denim supply chain advancements, such IndiGold®. They are starting their next phase of long-term expansion with this equity round.

Since its founding, the company has successfully grown, harvested, and processed its exclusive indigo varietals on more than 500 acres of farms in Tennessee, Kentucky, and Florida using its repeatable and scalable farmer production approach. The company's natural indigo method reduces carbon emissions and fixes nitrogen, allowing the farms where the crops are cultivated to make environmental improvements. Tropical indigo from Stony Creek Colors can be used by farmers who want to break up pest cycle or improve soil fertility while also earning a realistic income per acre and achieving significant regenerative agriculture goals.

Tim Hassler, Managing Director at Lewis & Clark AgriFood, said that Stony Creek's 2021 fundraising round enabled the company to move production to a more tropical area, where its improved plant genetics are ideally suited. The company is ready to expand agricultural production and processing to fulfill the growing need for clean colors in the textile sector.

Stony Creek Colors is renowned for its advancements in new dye applications and customer point-of-use for this natural chemistry, in addition to its integrations with the agricultural supply chain. Together with industry pioneers in speciality chemicals Archroma, Stony Creek Colors publicly introduced IndiGold® earlier this year, the first pre-reduced indigo for denim mills that are sourced from plants. This product provides a long-needed commercial drop-in option for manufacturing industrial denim.

After working with Stony Creek Colors for the first time five years ago, San Francisco-based Levi Strauss and Co. has received this investment. The Levi Strauss & Co. Wellthread® collection, a live R&D lab that solves design and manufacturing issues in order to develop cutting-edge goods that promote a more sustainable future, was the first to use Stony Creek Colors' plant-based dyes.

Paul Dillinger, Levi Strauss & Co. Head of Global Product Innovation, said that the promise of plant-based dyes had been demonstrated by our work with Stony Creek on the Levi's® brand and our Wellthread® collections. They're eager to work with the company more closely by assisting in its attempts to successfully commercialize plant-based dyeing alternatives.

In order to produce a high-purity dye suitable for its industrial denim mill customers, Stony Creek Colors' vertically integrated technology eliminates the significant historical inefficiencies in plant-based indigo production. Additionally, it demonstrates a chemical that is beneficial to the soil's health and the environment and fits well into farmers' annual crop rotations. Stony Creek is currently expanding the availability of renewable color chemistries in response to the growing demand for plant-based breakthroughs in the fashion and textile industries.

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