Unfold is amplifying the capability of vertical farming to delight/fully feed people from “seed to table.”
It starts with providing an integrated offering of superior seeds and digital services, coupled with shared learning and agronomic insight.
Everything we do is in service of making plants better, more resilient, easier to grow, more accessible, more nutritious, and more flavorful. And it’s all responsively attuned to the particular needs of the vertical farming industry.
We’re working within an interconnected community to reimagine the nature of how we sow, grow, and know plants. Join us in creating a world in which the most fresh, most nutritious, most delicious produce is available to every person on our planet.
Our principal investors, Leaps by Bayer and Temasek share our HOPE/full vision to expand the boundaries of what’s possible for our collective tomorrow by working hard on what can be done today.
Leaps by Bayer is built to drive fundamental breakthroughs in the fields of health and agriculture through new technologies. Leaps by Bayer is investing into solutions to some of today’s biggest challenges in health and agriculture.
Alongside Temasek, the investment for Unfold was co-led by Leaps by Bayer, the impact investment arm of Bayer AG.
The three roles as an Investor, Institution and Steward, as defined in the Temasek Charter, shape Temasek’s ethos to do well, do right and do good. Temasek actively seeks sustainable solutions to address present and future challenges, as it captures investment and other opportunities that help to bring about a better, smarter and more sustainable world.
Temasek is an investment company with a net portfolio value of US$ 313 billion as at 31 March 2019.
Vice President of Plant Performance
Dan is a seasoned entrepreneur and has been working to bring high-capacity-indoor farming to market since 2008. In 2010, Dan began laying the groundwork of what would become Farmbox Greens, a Seattle based vertical-farm which specialized in growing specialty produce for retail and food service customers. In 2016, Farmbox was acquired by a regional produce company and Dan went on to scale Farmbox to serve customers in the Northwest and beyond. In his role at Unfold as the VP of Plant Performance Dan hopes to bring his operational knowledge and combine it with the opportunity in seed genetics to unlock the full potential of the vertical farming industry. Prior to his career in indoor agriculture Dan received his Masters Degree in Landscape Architecture, and worked for a variety of Design firms in Seattle.
Derek R. Drost
Vice President of Genetics
Derek is a leader in collaborative open innovation with a wealth of industry expertise in the fields of plant genetics, genome editing, molecular breeding, and trait commercialization. Prior to joining Unfold, Derek served as Innovation Manager for BASF, where he cultivated opportunities to accelerate BASF’s agricultural and biological research and development pipelines through external partnerships and university collaborations. Derek also worked for over eight years as a genetics and genomics research team leader for Monsanto in the vegetable seeds and row crop businesses, successfully bridging molecular genetics with plant breeding, and driving new commercial opportunities for key traits including disease resistance, fruit quality, and agronomics. Derek received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in Agronomy & Horticulture and earned a Ph.D. in Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Florida.
John Purcell, Ph.D. has dedicated his life to helping farmers safely and sustainably grow food using less of the earth's natural resources. In his role as President and CEO of Unfold, John is continuing to improve the food ecosystem with more sustainable, fresher, and better-tasting fruits and vegetables, helping farm operators and retailers deliver on the immense promise of vertical farming. Prior to joining the food and agriculture industry, John was a post-doctoral researcher at the United States Department of Agriculture. He earned his Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.
Vice President of Product
Micki is a veteran technology operator and company builder. Micki's successes as a Silicon Valley operator include being an early product manager on the Netscape browser, first head of product at eBay, and Head of Product for 4 start-up companies including 2 exits. Micki combined her passion for the food system with her experience as a technologist to start the Sustainable Food Systems program at Orange and to become a venture investor in food and agriculture tech for the venture firms Social Capital and Radical Growth. She serves on the advisory boards of several early-stage start-ups focused on agtech. Micki hold a B.S. in Information & Decision Systems, visual communications minor from Carnegie Mellon University.
Minos Athanassiadis is a Vice President at iFoodDS. He is part of the market leading team which provides SaaS food safety and traceability tools to grower-shippers globally, as well as quality assurance and management tools to top grocery retailers in the US and Australia.
Minos has deep expertise in both the agriculture and technology industries. He has held a series of senior positions with production agriculture companies including Dole Fresh Vegetables and Underwood Ranches. As Managing Director of the advisory firm Fresh Link Group, he led projects for a broad spectrum of clients including Walmart, John Deere, and numerous privately held companies.
He is a graduate of the University of California at Davis and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
Daphne Carmeli has over 35 years of experience leading and advising teams in high growth, category defining, entrepreneurial environments – resulting in 9 successful exits. She was the founder and CEO of Deliv, a leading crowdsourced logistics company that was recently acquired by Target where she currently as VP Emerging Business. Prior to her role as CEO and founder of Deliv, Daphne was the CEO of Metreo, a pricing optimization software company, from its inception in 2000 through its acquisition by Symphony Technology Group in 2006. Prior to Metreo, Daphne was the Vice President of the eCommerce group at Netscape / America Online (AOL), and on the founding team and head of Marketing at WebMD. Additionally, over the last 2 decades she keeps connected to all the latest disruptive technologies as she serves on Boards and helps mentor founders of early stage companies in software, mobile, security, ecommerce, health, logistics, robotics and crowdsourcing spaces – many of which have executed successful IPO or M/A exits.