Disclosure: AgFunder, AFN’s parent company, is an investor in Aquaconnect.
- India-based aquaculture management platform Aquaconnect has secured a $15 million Series A round.
- Lok Capital led the round with participation from Louis Dreyfus Company Ventures and Suneight Investment.
- Existing investors AgFunder, Omnivore, Rebright Partners, Flourish Ventures and HATCH, along with other debt investors, also participated.
- Aquaconnect will use the new capital to build up its product portfolio for both pre-harvest and post-harvest services.
Why it matters:
Though India is the world’s third-largest seafood producer, its domestic industry is rife with inefficiencies. Outdated production methods and a lack of transparent practices and supply chains are just a couple of the major problems the industry faces. Other challenges include finding buyers and accessing formal capital.
All of this eats into smallholder farmer incomes and makes it difficult for them to diversify their businesses and increase income.
Speaking in a statement, Lok Capital partner Hari Krishnan said, “the industry is hampered by inefficiencies in the value chain and poses a huge scope for tech disruption. Yet its true potential is untapped. Aquaconnect, with its deep-tech intervention, has the potential to disrupt the Indian aquaculture value chain and emerge as a key player in the growing blue food segment.”
How it works:
Aquaconnect is addressing the industry’s inefficiencies with an aquaculture platform that organizes and digitizes supply chain logistics and builds more transparency into the overall value chain.
The Aquaconnect mobile app provides smallholder producers with a variety of tools and services across the value chain. Fish and shrimp farmers can access advisory services to increase farm productivity, manage elements like water quality and aquatic health, and connect with formal banks for financing.
The platform also includes a marketplace, where producers can buy inputs, and the “Aquabazaar,” which matches farmers with prospective buyers.
All of these services aim to give smallholder shrimp and fish farmers greater yields ultimately bigger incomes.
Aquaconnect at a glance:
Founded in 2017, Aquaconnect currently serves more than 90,000 fish and shrimp farmers; it also has a network of over 500 last-mile partners.
Company founder and CEO Rajamanohar Somasundaram, said these numbers have helped Aquaconnect “scale phenomenally” throughout six major aquaculture production states in India, including Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Odisha, and Tamil Nadu.
“In the next 12 months, we are set to triple our AquaPartners’ network across India and optimize our service offerings,” he added.
Aquaconnect raised $4 million in pre-Series A funding last year.