Gurgaon-based DeHaat, a technology based farmers’ marketplace that offers complete seeds-to-market end to end services to farmers​, has raised US$4 million ( ~₹30 crore) in a pre-series A round of funding led by impact investor Omnivore.

US-based agriculture investor AgFunder and several angel investors also contributed to the round, which was the first institutional round of DeHaat.

The startup will utilize the fresh funds in reaching out to over 250,000 farmers over the next 12 months. It also plans to set up 14 regional warehouses to store inventory and after a year or so expand to Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.

Earlier in 2016, DeHaat had raised about ₹50 lakh from the IIM Calcutta Innovation Centre. Prior to this, it has raised ₹50 lakh in 2014 from angel investors.

Founded in 2012, by IIT Delhi graduate Shashank Kumar, DeHaat aims to maximize farmers'​ income through technology-led interventions by offering all agricultural needs of farmers under one roof in an accessible and affordable way.

Through DeHaat platform, farmers, on one side get access to best quality input (seeds, fertilizers, crop protection, agri-equipment, credit, etc.),while on the other side they also get access to institutional buyers for their produce (grains, F&V, pulses, spices and medicinal herbs).

DeHaat now intends to reach out to over 250,000 farmers over the next 12 months with the fresh capital. It also plans to set up 14 regional warehouses to store inventory although it won’t own any, Kumar said. After a year or so, it plans to expand to Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.

Recent Activity in Agri-Tech Space

Earlier in January, Chennai based Agri-tech start-up WayCool had raised $17 million, as a combination of equity and debt from LGT Impact, prominent angels, and institutional lenders, including Northern Arc Capital and Caspian.

In the same month, agrifood tech accelerator Gastrotope announced the names of 5 startups in its first cohort of its program. Gastrotope was launched in September last year by Taizo Son’s Mistletoe, GSF, and Infobridge.

In December, Bangalore-based Ninjacart, an agri-marketing platform that connects farmers with retailers, had raised ₹250 crore in series B round of funding from venture capital firms Accel Partners (US), Switzerland-based Syngenta Ventures and Neoplux, a South Korean private equity firm.

Recently, Saas-based agri-tech firm CropIn announced that it has grown by 300% during the last 15 months. CropIn is backed by Chiratae Ventures (formerly IDG Ventures India) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Strategic Investment Fund (London & Seattle).

Source - LiveMint
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