Plant-based food and drink products like Oatly are playing an ever greater role in mainstream food and retail markets Oatly shares opened its first day of trading on Thursday at $22.12 — a 30% jump from the $17 set for the initial public offering (IPO) — giving the company a stock market valuation of $13 billion. The Swedish vegan food and drink maker raised a total of $1.4 billion (€1.2 billion) from the listing, as it sold over 84 million American depositary shares at $17 (€14) a piece, the top of its marketed range. The IPO highlights growing investor interest in plant-based products, as more and more restaurants and food retailers respond to a demand for sustainable alternatives to dairy products. Founded in 1994 by brothers Rickard and Bjorn Oste, today Oatly sells dairy alternatives in over 20 markets across Europe, the US and China. The company uses a technology developed at Sweden’s Lund University to create oat-based milk, yogurt, and ice cream products. Oatly markets itself as a sustainable alternative to traditional dairy products Celebrity backing Last year, Oatly raised $200 million in an investment round that attracted buy-ins from the actress Natalie Portman, American TV personality Oprah […]

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