Beyond Meat's robust IPO launch
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
Beyond Meat shares popped 163% yesterday on their first day of trading, marking the best IPO day performance since before the financial crisis.
The bull case: Beyond Meat rival Impossible Foods recently got onto Burger King's menu, and there is widespread speculation that Beyond Meat will strike a similar deal with McDonald's or Wendy's.
- Former McDonald's CEO Don Thompson is on the Beyond Meat board, having invested through his VC firm Cleveland Avenue.
- These products aren't just for vegetarians and vegans, with Impossible CFO David Lee telling me Monday that around 90% of his company's customers consider themselves to be carnivores.
The bear case: More than a dozen states are considering legislation that would make it illegal for companies to use the word "meat" to describe burgers or sausages that are made from plant-based materials or in labs.
- This is the cattle ranchers lobby vs. the grocery lobby, and could present a particular challenge for a company with "meat" in its actual name.
- There have been similar legal skirmishes over words like "egg" and "milk," with "chicken" most likely to follow as Tyson prepares to launch its own alternative protein product this summer.