Rockit taking second bite to fund growth

The Rockit apple, an export success largely funded by Tauranga Enterprise Angels investors, has launched the second phase of its 2014-15 financing round.

It seeks a further $3 million to fund new hectarage and market development.

Stage one of Rockit Orchard No2 Limited Partnership (ROP2) last year was over-subscribed, raising $3.8 million of the $6.8 million amount sought, said Steve Saunders, a director of Havelock North Fruit Company (HNFC), which controls the cultivar. The Rockit is a golf ball-sized apple marketed in a tube format as a high-end convenience snack.

“We are under budget and ahead of our targets in terms of production,” Mr Saunders told Enterprise Angels members at their bi-monthly meeting on Tuesday.

The initial limited partnership in 2012 established 65.9ha of Rockit plantings and a further 28ha had been developed with the first tranche of the second partnership, he said.

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