Two US-based technology startups – Aeris and Hello Tractor, have partnered to launch an ‘Uber’-like tractor leasing services in India an ASEAN region.
Established in 1992, Aeris is California-based IoT startup while Hello Tractor is a 4-years-old technology company that promotes tractor co-sharing throughout African agricultural communities.
Together, these firms will launch tractor leasing service with 500 tractors in eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar within the next two to three months.The services offered would be a pay-as-you-use model for small holding farmers. The companies however haven’t yet decided on the hire prices to be charged from the farmers.
Eastern UP and Bihar are two states where fewer farmers can afford expensive machinery, unlike relatively prosperous and large farmers in states like Punjab and Haryana where ownership of farm equipment is high, said Rishi Mohan Bhatnagar, President of Aeris India.
“The majority of farmers in the predominantly agrarian societies, such as India and Asean countries, have less than five acres of land and can barely afford high-cap equipment,” Bhatnagar said.
Aeris India brings On-demand farming capabilities to the predominantly agrarian economies — India and ASEAN.
About HelloTractor, it is an award winning diversified agri-tech startup founded by Van Jones in 2014. The startup focused on improving food and income security throughout sub-Saharan Africa by facilitating convenient and affordable tractor services to poor farmers, who often face labor constraints that result in under cultivation, late planting, and lost income. HelloTractor help these farmers by providing additional income by turning tractor’s into Smart IoT-enabled tractors. For Smart Tractor owners, our platform provides remote tracking of assets, preventing fraud and machine misuse, through virtual Smart Tractor monitoring.
With launching its services in India, farmers in the country can now see HelloTractor’s similar African-model to be replicated for Indian farmers to make extra source of income for them.
Tractors form an integral part of farm mechanization and have a crucial role to play in increasing agricultural productivity specially in India, Africa and ASEAN region has its roots in agrarian societies and agriculture occupies a special role in the socioeconomic development.
A recent study by NABARD showed 5.2 per cent of agricultural households in India owned a tractor and just 1.8 per cent owned a power tiller.
In a seprate development, CalAmp, a technology solutions pioneer transforming the global connected economy, announced that it is partnering with Hello Tractor and Aeris to equip John Deere tractors with intelligent telematics and wireless connectivity.
Besides this, India’s other local players in Tractor-as-a-Service offerings include companies like Mahindra & Mahindra’s Trringo, Khetibadi.com and Ex-Airtel CEO founded EM3 services, which have been providing platforms for farmers to take tractors on lease or rent for a value.
Source – Livemint