The age-old agriculture industry has been seeing a lot of evolution in the past years with farmers leveraging the power of Big Data and Internet of Things, resulting in improved crop yields and a movement towards what is being coined as Precision Agriculture. With hefty acquisitions such as Climate Corp by Monsanto for nigh on a billion dollars, we are starting to seeing a stronger push of startups trying to provide innovate solutions for this industry.
If you look at the current options, most farm management tools are old fashioned, costly, more often that not with a terrible UX and most importantly, not on not mobile meaning that farmers cannot work from the fields.
Agroptima, a Barcelona startup, has developed a groundbreaking analytics and management tool to process and manage farm data allowing farmers to make better decisions, increase productivity and save costs. Their interface will have a very intuitive UI/UX in order to allow any farmer to use it easily from any device. According to Founder & CEO Emilia Vila, “Agroptima is the next generation of farm management. We are building the Internet of Fields and disrupting an industry that is mainly offline but where mobile, cloud and analytics are critical.” Co-founder Anisia Tardà adds, “With Agroptima, we are bringing the power of data to the hands of farmers.”
The platform will enable farmers to keep track of their activities on the move (i.e. from the tractor), plan their work on the fields, keep track of costs, make traceability reports required by law, control stock, make invoices from works, send invoices from their phones and a myriad of other features. “To stay competitive, farmers will need to professionalize more and more. A solution like Agroptima is critical to turn farms into competitive businesses” comments Co-founder & CTO Ferran Gascon
The solution is being developed together with Cooperativa Agro Igualada, a Cooperative with more than 600 members and the first version, which will be available in September, will be the result of many sessions with farmers with whom they have essentially co-created and tested the solution.
Their target market is EU and North America, which are the two most mechanized agricultural regions in the world with a specific focus on small and middle sized farmers (which account for about 8 million farms).
The founding team consist of Emilia Vila (CEO) who is an experienced startup founder, having helped launch five start-ups in Berlin, working in Rocket Internet and in other accelerators like AS Plug & Play, Ferran Gascon (CTO), an experienced engineer who in the past built robots that won top positions in more than 25 robotics competitions across Europe, and Anisia Tardà (Chief Agricultural Engineer) who studied Agricultural Engineering in the University of Lleida and who has worked closely with farmers for 4 years solving their everyday challenges. Apart from the great combination, each founding member has family that works in the agriculture business.
Until date, the Barcelona startup has been bootstrapped however they are now stepping into fundraising mode to scale rapidly. They have won numerous competitions such as the EIT ICT Labs Idea Challenge 2nd Prize and the IoT Bootcamp organized by hub:raum (Deutsche Telekom) in Berlin.
This is a very interesting space and Agroptima are making some great headway.
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