European data-driven AgTech startups
Farmers manage almost half of the European land area, making agriculture a dominant industry in Europe. A wave of the AgTech startups, initiated by the acquisition of Climate Crop by Monsanto in 2013, has reached Europe, where a startup activity is growing in the AgTech domain during last 3–4 years.
Yet, Europe presents some challenges to AgTech startups, that can be summarized as follows:
- Agriculture is not industrial in Europe, generally, it’s very fragmented market with some exceptions in Eastern Europe. The average farm size in Europe is 16 hectares.
- Lack of funding and AgTech startup accelerators/ incubators in Europe comparing to the US. However, many AgTech/ foodtech accelerators emerged in Europe during last 2 years, including StartLife, EIT Food Accelerator Network, ShakeUpFactory, Startupbootcamp FoodTech, The Yield Lab in Ireland, SmartAgriFood, KATANA, and more.
- Largest agrifood corporations in Europe (Syngenta, BASF, Bayer, Nestle, Yara, Barilla, etc.) experiment with European AgTech startups at a limited scale. The large agricultural companies should get up to speed to make use of products, services and technologies, provided by the European AgTech startups.
In this post, we are going to take a look at some of the most exciting European startups for a variety of categories within the AgTech industry. This list will help you become more familiar with the companies leading this space, so check it out!
- HummingBird Technologies, UK (total funding — NA) — HummingBird Tech is a company that uses drones with customized sensors to gather data and imagery to be used for precision agriculture. They make use of advanced machine learning algorithms and computer vision to provide insights on crop health. Their products include detection of crop diseases, nutrient optimization and more.
- Gamaya, Switzerland (total funding USD 7.4M) — Through drone-based hyperspectral imaging, satellite data and artificial intelligence, along with the weather information, Gamaya helps to improve the efficiency and sustainability of farming businesses. They focus on delivering various crop and region-specific agronomy solutions like planting efficiency analysis, yield forecasting, weeds detection, detection of nutrients, and more.
- Taranis, Israel (total funding USD 9.5M) — Taranis offers a precision agriculture platform that is designed to help farmers monitor their crops, detect pests and crop diseases, and make better decisions about their businesses. They focus on big data analysis through sub-cm aerial imagery, sensor-based field and weather data.
- Prospera, Israel (total funding USD 22M) — Prospera offers data monitoring and reporting tools for indoor and outdoor farms, and provides a visualization of the farmer’s entire production using computer vision and artificial intelligence. This allows farmers to streamline their performance at scale and make smart, data-backed decisions. The company uses a combination of RGB cameras, ground-based sensors and weather data.
Data Processing Software
- Agisoft, Russia (total funding — NA) — Agisoft is a startup that makes use of a tool called PhotoScan, which is a stand-alone software that performs photogrammetric processing of digital images and further generates 3D spatial data to be used in various industries and applications.
- Pix4D, Switzerland (total funding USD 4.8M, owned by Parrot) — Pix4D is a professional drone mapping and photogrammetry software company that allows to process drone-based imagery and turn it into georeferenced maps and 3D models.
Satellite Data Providers
- GeoSys, France (total funding — NA) — GeoSys is the established company that provides solutions in the agricultural industry for farmers that want to understand their fields and how their crops are performing. To do this, they make use of satellite imagery and data analysis tools. The company provides various products, including variable-rate application maps for nitrogen, day-to-day field performance and benchmarking, variability maps and zoning. Geosys has solutions for insurance and commodity businesses.
Farm Machinery and Robotics
- EcoRobotix, Switzerland (total funding USD 3M) — EcoRobotix was the first company to provide a 100% autonomous robot for the weeding of row crops, meadows and intercropping cultures. Their robot will also use 20x less herbicide due to its accuracy.
- Zasso, Switzerland, Germany (total funding — NA) — Another weed removal solution, Zasso makes use of high-voltage electric power to destroy both the shoots and roots of unwanted plants. Equipment called Electroherb is attached to a tractor. These solutions are safe and do not require any chemicals or toxins.
- eFarmer, Netherlands (total funding USD 1.5M) — This company makes use of a professional tractor navigation and a precision farming system called FieldBee. It uses a GPS antenna and an auto-steer kit to automate the movement of your tractor.
- AgroSturman, Russia (total funding — NA) — AgroSturman is a company that is leading the Russian market in navigation technologies for agricultural machinery. They supply and maintain autopilot systems, develop crop monitoring systems, and provide sensor systems for things like yield mapping and weed detection.
- FieldIn, Israel (total funding USD 5M) — Established in 2013, FieldIn builds technology to help growers make pest management more effective and safer. This is done through their machinery-based sensor and software that is designed for specialty crop growers. Their platform delivers a new level of transparency, traceability and collaboration to the farm.
Farm Management Systems (FMS)
- Vital Fields, Estonia (total funding USD 2.2M, acquired by Climate Corp) — As a farm management tool, Vital Fields allows growers to record data, import maps, get help with compliance reporting, benchmark reports and more. The software enables farmers to make a process of applying for European Union subsidies more efficient and automated.
- Agrivi, UK (total funding USD 1.4M) — Agrivi farm management software is built to help farmers plan, monitor, and analyze their activities. Things like planting, spraying, fertilization, harvesting, and irrigation are all areas of focus on their platform.
- Wefarm, UK (total funding USD 1.6M) — Wefarm is a farmer-to-farmer digital network, where farmers can share information via SMS. They can ask questions and receive crowd-sourced answers from farmers anywhere in the world.
- Cropio, Cyprus/ US (total funding — NA) — Cropio is a decision-making tool and productivity management platform that allows farmers to monitor and optimize their operations. The platform focuses on things like fertilization, irrigation, crop health, and yield forecasts. The software platform leverages satellite imagery and allows to integrate drone-based imagery to gain additional insights about crops.
- Exact Farming, Russia (total funding — NA) — This online farm management system offers a suite of tools for things such as field mapping, scouting, workflows, resource and economic management, weather analysis, and more. Their simple interface makes it easy for people of any background to benefit from their tools.
- IntTerra, Russia (total funding — NA) —IntTerra provides decision support tools for various companies in the agriculture industry. The farm management platform integrates various technologies and data sources, including weather, satellite imagery, machinery data, and more. The Company provides solutions for crop scouting, automated quality assessment of the field operations, constant monitoring of crops, field rankings, and more.
- AgriCircle, Switzerland (total funding — NA) — With a focus on maximizing yields, AgriCircle gives farmers an end-to-end software system that covers things from variable rate applications of herbicides and seeds, all the way to field history, data analytics, and emissions. Germany is the main market for the Company.
- Geoscan, Russia (total funding — NA) — Geoscan provides unmanned aerial systems for all types of professionals, and in terms of the agricultural industry, they offer specialized fixed-wing drones for aerial photographic survey and 3D modeling. Drone-based imagery can be processed using the Agisoft PhotoScan software.
- Unmanned Systems, Russia (total funding — NA) — Unmanned Systems design and manufacture unmanned aerial vehicles to be used for video surveillance and aerial photography in various industries, including agriculture, power and oil/ gas industries.
- Delair Tech, France (total funding USD 14.5M) — Delair Tech is an aerial intelligence company that provides drone solutions for agriculture and forestry. Their drones efficiently observe and classify crops and communicate this information in real-time to farmers. This allows them to make the better decisions as they go about their work.
- Matrix, Ukraine (total funding — NA) — The UAV Katana, initially created for military applications, is a lightweight unmanned aerial vehicle out of Matrix UAV. It uses the easiest operational control technology in the UAV market. It can also be set for a fully automatic, semi-automatic, and manual mode.
- SenseFly, Switzerland (total funding USD 37M, 100% owned by Parrot) — For the agricultural industry, SenseFly provides a few different UAV options that are designed to give farmers better crop insights so that they can better plan and manage their businesses. Their technology can be applied to things like crop monitoring, soil assessment, crop protection, insurance, and more. SenseFly eBee is one of the most popular drones used in agricultural industry.
- C-Astral, Slovenia (total funding — NA) — The multiple drone and UAV offerings at C-Astral provide farmers with advanced tools for real-time video observation. They also have various add-on sensors that can be used for many of the previously mentioned applications.
- Kray Technologies, Ukraine (total funding — NA) — The drone that Kray Technologies built is one of the most efficient crop protection systems on the market. Its focus is all on crop dusting and optimizing that process. Their technology can be used on the industrial scale and for almost any type of farm.
- CropX, Israel (total funding USD 10M) — CropX, or the “Internet of the Soil,” is a software and hardware solution for monitoring soil conditions like humidity, temperature, electrical conductivity, and more. Their sensors connect wirelessly to a cloud-based platform where it can be accessed by any internet-connected device.
- Phytech, Israel (total funding USD 14M) — The sensors and systems that Phytech developed allow farmers to make data-backed decisions about their plants. This optimizes production, reduces risk, and makes the farmer more money. They offer direct plant sensing, data analytics, and plant status and recommendations.
- Sencrop, France (total funding USD 1.7M) — Sencrop refers to themselves as connected agriculture weather stations, where anyone can access weather information to benefit their operations. They make use of connected wind a rain gauges to allow for more efficiency, accuracy, and eco-friendly farming.
- Connecterra, Netherlands (total funding USD 1.8M) — Connecterra is an AI-based assistant for dairy farmers and is the first of its kind. It helps farmers track the activities of their cows and learn how they can run their dairy farm more efficiently. It does this through machine learning and other areas of artificial intelligence.