After just completing the Y Combinator accelerator program, North Carolina-based satellite imagery startup FarmShots has closed a seed round after attracting local angel investors. Founder Josh Miller said that keeping the investor base local avoided any potential investor demands to move the company to the expensive West Coast.
Investment into agriculture technology startups fell 20% year-over-year in the first half of 2016, as 307 funding deals collected $1.75 billion. At the same time, deal activity increased 7% and the number of unique investors increased 52% year-over-year.
One of the criticisms laid at the door of agtech startups is that they doesn’t interact enough with the farming community they are trying to serve. Farmers and venture capitalists alike express concern that there is sometimes too much focus on the technology at hand, and not enough on the immediate value it will provide farmers.