Start-up ag-tech company AppHarvest announced Monday it has purchased the Morehead, Ky. controlled environment agriculture facility and the property on which it is located from Equilibrium, a sustainability investment firm, for $125 million.
Equilibrium had worked in conjunction with AppHarvest to acquire the property and funded construction of the facility to lease to AppHarvest.
“The purchase of our first CEA facility allows us to reduce our operating costs by eliminating the previous lease expense and creates an opportunity to leverage a portion of this asset with low-interest debt that will create a positive return on equity for investors. As a testament to its climate resilience, our Morehead farm just set a performance record for harvesting, even as many other operators suffered weather-related challenges,” said AppHarvest President David Lee.
The company expects to begin harvesting the first crop of an additional 30 acres of the Tomatoes on the Vine variety early in the second quarter, which will further expand volume.
In conjunction with the transaction, Equilibrium Chairman and CEO and AppHarvest Board Member Dave Chen will exit the AppHarvest board. Chen had been serving on the nominating and governance committee.