Launched in 2016, Gobasco is led by Vedant Katiyar and Abhishek Sharma. The team is building an AI-powered data-driven supply chain optimisation platform to revolutionise the agriculture industry in India. It carries out real-time data analytics on data-streams coming from multiple sources across the country aided with AI-optimised automated pipelines, thereby optimising the transportation cost by over 30%.
Gobasco claims to have worked with over 5,000 farmers till date.The startup carries out artificial intelligence-based automatic grading and sorting for vegetables and fruits. “The goal is to use artificial intelligence and big data to optimise the agri-supply-chain across India,” said Abhishek.
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The startup will use the raised funds for scaling and building a full stack commerce platform that yields higher operational efficiency, improves realisations for farmers, reduces wastage and enhances price and market discovery for agricultural commodities.
Agritech Funding: Rising To The Top Of The Graph
According to Inc42 Datalabs, the size of agriculture and allied activities in the country underwent a near-100% growth between FY14 and FY15. Agricultural exports increased from $24.7 Bn in 2011-12 to $32.08 Bn in 2015-16; a CAGR growth of more than 6.75%.
Further, in last few months agritech sector has attracted a few decent investments from the investor community. This includes names such as Gold Farm ($2 Mn), Taaza ($8 Mn), AgroStar ($10 Mn), WayCool ($2.7 Mn), Utkal Tubers ($4.6 Mn), EM3 Agri Services ($10 Mn), NinjaCart and more.
Investors that are active in the agritech space include Omnivore Partners, Future Venture Capital Company Ltd. (FVCCL), IDG Venture, Accel Partners, Aspada Investments, IvyCap Ventures, Unitus Seed Fund, Rabo Equity Advisors, SAIF Partners, Villgro Innovations Foundation, Qualcomm Ventures and IDFC.
Also, recently, Taizo Son, Founder & Chairman, Mistletoe, launched ‘Gastrotope’, an accelerator platform to help integrate the entire AgriFood startup ecosystem, enabling startups to face challenges at multiple layers. Also, VC firm Omnivore Partners will soon close a $90 Mn fund in order to invest in 20 agritech and rural innovation specific startups by next year.
Matrix Partners India: On An Investment Spree In Delhi
Earlier in August 2017, Matrix Partners India revealed its plans to increase its investments in Delhi-based startups in order to expand its consumer Internet portfolio as well as serve what it believes is an underserved market by investors. Currently, 50% of Matrix’s portfolio companies are based in Bengaluru (such as Practo, Quikr, Ola, Razorpay, Loadshare) while 15-20% are located in NCR (such as Treebo, OfBusiness).
However, this is the first investment of Matrix Partners India in Agritech sector. According to Rajinder Balaraman, Vice-President of Matrix Partners India, “SMEs in India are adopting technology at a rapid pace, thus opening up opportunities in large, underserved markets like agriculture. The Gobasco team is growing fast and is highly mission-driven,” said Balaraman.
Here are the other investments made by Matrix Partners India in 2017.
Matrix Partners India imparts its portfolio companies a cumulative 30+ years of experience. With its investors’ global network and expertise and the fresh funding, how Gobasco will be able to lead its way in the thriving Indian agritech community remains to be seen.
(The development was reported by ETtech.)