Vijayawada-based Internet of Things aquatech startup Eruvaka has raised an undisclosed amount of Series B funding led by Nutreco, a global leader in animal nutrition and aqua feed, and existing investor Omnivore.
With the funding, Nutreco takes a 25% stake in Eruvaka, thus entering into a commercial partnership to help scale Eruvaka globally.
Commenting on the fundraise, Sreeram Raavi, Founder and Managing Director, Eruvaka said, “I’m impressed by Nutreco’s depth of knowledge of shrimp farming and I look forward to working with the company on the joint development of further projects.”
Nutreco’s aquaculture division Skretting will work directly with Eruvaka to implement the latest in precision farming technology, initially in Latin America. The technology will be incorporated into AquaSim, Skretting’s suite of customised performance tools, to allow local shrimp farmers to remotely ensure accurate dosages of the right feed when their stock requires it, avoiding over- or under-feeding.
Nutreco will be represented on the board of Eruvaka by its Chief Innovation Officer, Viggo Halseth.
On the investment, Knut Nesse, CEO, Nutreco said, “I’m delighted that this investment enables us to bring our customers the very latest in smart technology. Eruvaka’s products perfectly complement our shrimp feed business and will help us further build scale across Latin America and Asia.”
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Founded in 2012 by Sreeram Raavi, Eruvaka develops connected devices and mobile- based decision tools for affordable monitoring and automation of aquaculture farms.
The company’s products allow farmers to actively monitor pond parameters and remotely control automated equipment, which significantly reduces farming risk while increasing feed efficiency, shrimp growth, and farm profitability.
One of its products offers real-time monitoring of ponds with intelligent control of aerators and feeders reduces production costs and increases yield and make it sustainable.
Another works as an automatic and intelligent feeder with smart controls and enables modern tech to monitor the feeding of fishes, while the third product is a cloud based pond management software.
Talking to Inc42 about Eruvaka, Mark Kahn, Founder, Omnivore shared that the company invested in Eruvaka in 2013 when it had sold a few units of PondGuard. “We were very impressed with the product Sreeram had created. His device gives farmers idea about what’s happening in the pond, which otherwise they had no idea about. Across the world, there was no one doing it. We saw the potential of it going across the India and also going Global. At present, more than 80% of their sales are outside India.”
He added, “We are thrilled that Nutreco will be working with Eruvaka to bring IoT solutions to aquaculture farmers across Latin America and Asia. Partnerships like this will help India’s agriculture technology startup ecosystem realize its full potential.”
Nutreco is one of the global leaders in animal nutrition and aqua feed. With its advanced feed solutions are at the origin of food for millions of consumers worldwide. Nutreco employs over 12,000 people in 32 countries with net sales of $7.14 Bn (€5.9 Bn) in 2016. Its two global company brands Skretting (aqua feed) and Trouw Nutrition (animal nutrition) have sales in over 90 countries.
The income of the farmers in India derived from their work in Agriculture and farmers’ income in India is a key focus area for the government and the Union Budget 2018 further reiterated the same. The current government has an ambitious aim, that of doubling the average income of farmers by 2022.
Both the central and state governments are proactively pursuing policies to improve the lives of farmers in the country. With all these developments in place, agritech has now become the buzzword in the Indian startup ecosystem, which currently has over 200+ agritech startups.
Recently, Omnivore invested an undisclosed amount in Chandigarh-based agritech startup AgNext through its second fund Omnivore partners India Fund 2.
Prior to this, Gramophone, a technology-enabled marketplace that focusses on enabling efficient farm management, raised $1 Mn (INR 6.40 Cr) Pre-Series A funding from Info Edge.
Also, Agricx Lab, an agritech startup that uses smartphone imaging to assess the quality of agricultural produce, raised Seed funding to the tune of $500K led by India-focussed VC fund Ankur Capital.
Around $36 Mn was invested in 15 startups in the agritech space in 2017, as per Inc42 DataLabs. With the fresh funding and an international company like Nutreco scaling its product, Eruvaka looks promising with a huge scope of expansion in India as well as at a global scale.