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Fundings-in-Brief: Precision Ag Startups from Outside the US Raise Seed Funding, more

May 19, 2016

Avrio Capital Completes Three Investments

Avrio Capital has now deployed C$15 million of capital from its $110 million Fund III. The investments include poultry and swine health data analytics startup Intelia Technologies Inc. frozen fruit and vegetable supplier Alasko and snack maker Cadcan Marketing & Sales operating as CheeCha Puffs. The three companies join chemicals company BioAmber in the portfolio. Find out more about the deals over on AgFunderNews.

CRISPR Startup Caribou Biosciences Raises $30m Series B

Caribou Biosciences, a startup founded by Jennifer Doudna, the scientist largely attributed with discovering CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing, has raised $30 million in a Series B funding. Dutch food and agriculture technology venture firm Anterra Capital invested alongside fellow agtech-focused VC Pontifax AgTech, healthcare investor Heritage Group, and Maverick Capital Ventures located in Dallas, Texas. Existing investors F-Prime Capital Partners, Novartis, Mission Bay Capital, and 5 Prime Ventures also joined the round. Caribou is developing the gene editing technology for use across agriculture, therapeutics, biological research, and industrial biotechnology. To learn more about how CRISPR gene editing technologies are picking up pace in agriculture, click here.

Animal Health Device Startup Connecterra Raises $1.8m

Netherlands-based Connecterra has raised a $1.8 million seed round led by London’s incubator Breed Reply along with UAE-based fund MENA Ventures and Japan-based gaming technology company DeNA Co as well as angel investor Elias Tabet. Founded in 2014, the company combines sensor technologies and machine learning to provide a health monitoring system for the dairy industry. Connecterra’s end-to-end solution consists of a wearable device, which monitors the herd in real-time and transmits the data to a cloud platform for analysis and prediction of behavioral patterns. Read our interview with the CEO on AgFunderNews.

Farm Management App Startup Agroptima Raises $784k

Agroptima, a Spanish company developing an app to help farmers improve their efficiency on the farm, has raised roughly $784k from a group of angel investors. The new funding will be used to help the Barcelona-based company further develop the app while expanding the company’s market throughout the rest of Europe and into the US. Just shy of its second birthday, Agroptima boasts 600 users on its service, which costs roughly $111 per year. The app keeps records of what the farmer did each day, including activities like planting, applying pesticides, or harvesting. The service has recently been updated to feature a service that calculates which crops are the most profitable for the farmer, called Costes.

Smart Farming App Agrosmart Raises $1m Seed Round

Agrosmart, a service that intends to connect farmers to their crops, has raised a $1 million seed round from Sao Paulo-based venture capital consultant and investor Baita and Brazilian venture capital firm SP Ventures. Using sensors, meteorological data, image processing and an application based on Cloud Computing, the app provides farmers with real-time monitoring of various metrics. The Brazilian company closed a $100,000 seed round in December 2014 with Baita as well as Spain’s federal startup support program Start-Up Brasil.

Indian Food E-Commerce Startup Swiggy Snags $7m Series D

Bengaluru-based food delivery startup Swiggy has raised a $7 million Series D round from existing investors global multi-stage venture capital firm Norwest Venture Partners, late-stage internet investment firm DST Global, and tech entrepreneur partners Accel Partners. The new funding will be used to help the startup strengthen its footing in its eight major markets. The company differentiates itself by offering live order tracking within the app, no minimum requirements on order sizes, and ownership of its delivery fleet. The company charges partner restaurants a fee for lead generation as well as taking one-quarter of each order’s total.


Aemetis Acquires Cellulosic Ethanol Tech Company Edeniq

Aemetis, a renewable fuel and chemicals company, is set to acquire Edeniq, a cellulosic ethanol technology company in a stock and cash offer. Edeniq has developed patented innovations that unlock cellulosic and starch sugars through a combination of mechanical and biological processes. In a press release about the merger, Aemetis described Edeniq as capital light and operationally efficient, facilitating easy integration into existing corn ethanol plants. Edeniq, a private company founded in 2008, has raised approximately $100 million from: global venture capital firms, including Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers, multi-stage investor Draper Fisher Jurvetson, clean energy and natural resource investor Angeleno Group, impact investor The Westly Group, cleantech venture capital firm I2BF Global Ventures, as well as US Department of Energy grant funding. Under the terms of the agreement, Aemetis expects to issue between one and two million shares of its common stock (depending on whether Edeniq stockholders elect to receive part of their consideration in cash or stock) plus cash to be paid over the next 5 years in an amount of up to $20 million (up to $18 million if Edeniq stockholders elect all stock consideration) in exchange for all of the issued and outstanding shares of Edeniq.

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