AgBiome Raises $65m Series C

AgBiome, the plant microbiome research and products company which counts the Gates Foundation as an investor, has raised $65 million in Series C funding. The round brought Fidelity Management and Research Company on as a new investor.

Existing investors University of Texas Investment Management Company (UTIMCO), Polaris Partners, ARCH Venture Partners, Innotech Advisers, Pontifax Global Food and Agriculture Technology Fund, and Monsanto Growth Ventures, also participated.

AgBiome last raised funding in 2015 with a $34.5 million Series B in which The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation made its first agtech equity investment. The startup has also received several rounds of grant funding from the Gates Foundation, most recently a multi-year grant in the area of nematology.

A year later, the company told AgFunderNews of plans to launch its first products into the market including Howler, a broad spectrum microbial fungicide. AgBiome Innovations, the commercial arm of AgBiome, also lists four more fungicides, Marazo, Mazolin, Miresa, and Xiphosin on its website, and an insecticide called Azomar.

Howler will hit the market in a soft launch this summer as ‘ZIO’ and AgBiome is targeting its sale into specialty crops later this year. “We have licensed the Howler technology to SePRO for the turf & ornamental market and they labeled it ZIO,” said a spokesperson.

The startup has partnerships with agricultural companies including SePRO, Syngenta and Genective that “accelerate our discovery process and allow us to deliver solutions for global markets,” a spokesperson told AgFunderNews.

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