Quarterly results released today by Western Australia-based Wide Open Agriculture (ASX: WOA) show a revenue of just under $1 million and the full development of its OatUp product from concept-to-launch within one calendar year.
The company achieved its sixth consecutive quarter of revenue growth, with figures for the three months to December 2020 reaching $989,261 – or an increase of 29% over the previous September 2020 period.
The revenue represents a 239% increase on sales achieved during the December 2019 quarter and highlights consistent demand from Wide Open’s growing base of customers seeking regenerative, ethical food and beverages.
Dirty Clean Food
The company’s Dirty Clean Food subsidiary turned out similar results for the quarter, with a number of new products further diversifying its range and contributing to revenue growth across all sales channels.
Online sales showed sustained growth despite the WA’s initial COVID-19 lockdown in early 2020, with sales of $299,253 achieved during the period.
Sales to food service outlets and cafes remained strong at $554,122 while retail sales rose 38% to $135,887 as a result of the subsidiary’s increased presence in that sector.
With Wide Open’s OatUP product only launching in late December, the majority of growth for the quarter came from the continued uptake of Dirty Clean Food’s existing product base.
OutUp is claimed to be the world’s first regenerative, carbon neutral oat milk and the company expects the product to add sequential growth to revenue across 2021.
In October, Wide Open raised $7 million from investors and introduced an Australian impact-focused institutional fund to WOA’s register.
An additional $1.5 million was secured via a share purchase plan during the period.
The funds are being directed towards growth activities for the business, including sales and marketing initiatives to grow its revenue base and expedite development of a WA-based pilot-scale lupin protein manufacturing plant and oat milk production facility.
Funding will also be allocated towards OatUP’s launch on Australia’s east cost and expansion into South East Asian markets such as Japan and Singapore, which have proven demand for WA oats and associated value-added products.
Wide Open said it would remain adequately funded to achieve all of its planned activities.
In November, Curtin University and CSIRO achieved a number of breakthroughs to improve the commercialisation potential of Wide Open’s plant-based protein business using Australian sweet lupin as the main ingredient.
Curtin confirmed that a common variety of lupin could gelate with comparable and encouraging yields to the original experimental variety, opening up wider supply options to meet potential demand for lupin protein with high environmental credentials.
CSIRO’s Food Innovation Centre also produced food-grade lupin protein isolate using industrial food processing equipment to potentially unlock previous barriers for lupin’s use in new food and beverage applications.
The protein presented a ‘neutral’ taste which increases the scope for it to also be included in a range of plant-based protein applications.
Wide Open said the achievements demonstrate an ability to produce commercial samples of lupin protein for despatch to domestic and international ingredient and consumer food companies.
Wide Open built a new executive team during the reporting period, appointing Jay Albany to the role of Dirty Clean Food chief executive officer.
Mr Albany most recently ran corporate strategy at Max Delivery and MyFreshGrocer, a New York-based online grocery company with annual revenue of $39 million.
He will focus on building Dirty Clean Food into a nationally-recognised brand, expanding market geographies and increasing revenue.
Product strategy executive Miranda Stamps was appointed to as chief operating officer to lead the implementation of Wide Open’s growth strategy.
Prior to joining the company, Ms Stamps held a leadership role with an education technology company valued at $392 million.