The round also saw participation from existing investors India Quotient and 021 Capital.
In October 2020, the company had
raised an undisclosed amount as part of its pre-Series A funding round Binny Bansal-backed 021 Capital and existing investor India Quotient, Better Capital and Ajay Prabhu.
The company plans to launch its Series B round in January 2022.
Founded in 2017 by Sai Gole and Siddharth Dialani, BharatAgri offers farmers an app-based platform for AI-based agronomy services on a paid subscription basis, which increases farm incomes through systematic implementation of scientific farming techniques.
According to the company, traditional farming practices fail to factor in changing climatic conditions, dwindling natural resources, and optimal use of expensive crop inputs.
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“BharatAgri’s proprietary algorithm collects data on more than 30 critical parameters to provide customized advisory across multiple crops, including grains, pulses, fruits, and vegetables. Farmers get a fully digital and automated service that provides targeted insights at appropriate times and regular monitoring of crops,” the release said.
“Even three years ago, it was unimaginable that rural Indians would be paying monthly subscription fees to Netflix and YouTube, which is normal today. BharatAgri has demonstrated that the same is possible with farmers, who see so much value in our advisory platform that they willingly pay subscription fees,” said Siddharth Dialani, cofounder and CEO of BharatAgri. “In the next few months, we will be expanding our platform to provide other agricultural services, starting with direct-to-farmer agri input supply.”
Over the past 12 months, BharatAgri has experienced 20x growth in paid subscription sales with a 65% renewal rate. BharatAgri currently has over 33,000 active paid users and aims to expand its subscription base to 150,000 by March 2022. The farmer population on the platform is evenly split between those growing horticulture crops and those growing commodity crops. On average, farmers pay approximately $8.00 (Rs 600) per acre for a six-month subscription, the release said.
“Making agronomy services widely accessible at an affordable price can help make the dream of doubling farmer incomes a reality,” said Mark Kahn, managing partner at Omnivore.
“We have observed in rural areas and specifically in agriculture that farmers like to fulfill all their needs from a single place, which is currently an inputs retailer. BharatAgri has the potential to replicate the same on a digital platform and tens of thousands of farmers have already adopted it,” said Madhukar Sinha, general partner at India Quotient.
Agritech startups are now increasingly attracting capital from venture capital and private equity funds.
A July 2021
report by Bain & Co. says that agritech and agri- ecosystem sectors have received significant interest from the investor community, making India the third-largest country in terms of agritech funding and the number of such startups.
According to the report, several estimates show that by 2025, the value pool will be created in agri-logistics, offtake, and agri-input delivery will be anywhere between $30–$35 billion. Some of the marquee companies that have raised capital from risk investors include, Ninjacart, AgroStar, Mahyco Grow, Husk, WayCool Foods and Products, Jumbotail, Vahdam, and DeHaat (Green AgRevolution).