NEWS RELEASE: AgLaunch365 Welcomes Fourth Cohort to Farm-Centric Model Programming
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (October 19, 2018) — Four new agtech startups entered AgLaunch365 Phase I programming last week in Memphis. AgLaunch365 integrates startups with farmers in the AgLaunch Farmer Network to create and implement sophisticated field trial protocols and prepare for funding by aligned capital sources.
As part of AgLaunch365 Phase I, teams receive intensive business development support and customer discovery assistance while also having access to leading accelerator programming, the AgLaunch Farmer Network, the Cultivator Mentor Network, AgLaunch capital partners Innova Ag Innovation Fund IV and to AgLaunch’s partnership with Farm Journal Media, among a range of other services.
This 6-week program, delivered through remote programming and in-person sessions held in Memphis, will culminate at the Farm Journal AgTech Expo in Indianapolis December 3-5, 2018.
“This group of teams is addressing key areas with disruptive innovations around soil health, farm efficiency, traceability, and ways of connecting buyers and sellers that save time and money,” said Pete Nelson, President and Executive Director of AgLaunch Initiative. “These teams will complement our current portfolio and add value for our farmers who are trying to create the next generation of farm operations in Tennessee and the surrounding region.”
Phase I teams are:
- Cattlog empowers ranchers to buy and sell cattle anytime, anywhere with an online marketplace backed by 3rd party escrow and arbitration.
- Newton RFID is an animal identification and mobile records management company which provides vital records about a horse, from an injected microchip.
- Shepherd lets growers manage their farm labor, tasks, and pay workers quickly and securely in order to help them be more productive and stay a step ahead of their farm work.
- Soil Nerd is a digital agronomist that helps farmers raise crop quality and reduce in-season risk through soil health management.
“The industry of agriculture has plenty of room to grow when it comes to technology, but it isn’t always easy to get started when you have a good, innovative agtech idea,” Agriculture Commissioner Jai Templeton said. “The resources that these four startups now have access to will be invaluable as they continue working to provide opportunities and innovations to other farmers in our region.”
AgLaunch365 teams are eligible for investment from a key AgLaunch partner, Innova and its USDA-certified Rural Business Investment Company fund, a $31 million fund backed by eight Farm Credit banks.
AgLaunch365 consists of three phases of support that align with a typical row crop growing season. Phase I teams develop business models and gain access to the Cultivator Mentor Network. Phase II participants refine their product or technology to be “field ready” for on-farm trials with AgLaunch365’s Farmer Network beginning in the spring. Phase III teams work directly with growers in the region to test their innovation in the field during the growing seasons.
Applications to participate in Phase II can be found here: http://aglaunch.com/aglaunch-365/. Deadline for Phase II is November 15, 2018.
About AgLaunch Initiative
AgLaunch is revolutionizing the way that innovations in agriculture and food are brought to market by bridging the present and future to grow a more diverse and sustainable farm economy and provide healthy food for all. AgLaunch leverages its distributed network of farm incubators, entrepreneurial farmers, aligned capital partners, research consortia, technical consulting, and best-in-class accelerator programming to effectively challenge the status quo and thoughtfully create value for farmers and the communities they serve. The AgLaunch vision is a transformed regional agriculture and food economy centered around farmers, innovation, and prosperity.