The Yield today announced a successful Series A funding round of $6.5 million, with significant investment from global corporations Bosch, KPMG and AgFunder. This funding takes investment in the company, which develops IoT-based solutions for agriculture and aquaculture, to $11.5 million in two years.
With a mission to use data to transform agriculture and food production practices, today and into the future, The Yield’s proprietary solution, Sensing+, unites sensors, hardware and software with predictive analytics and artificial intelligence to help growers make critical on-farm decisions.
The Yield Founder and Managing Director Ros Harvey said, “Australia is the perfect breeding ground for Agtech innovation, because our conditions are so tough. Growers are innovative because they need to be. Helping them to solve real problems, while creating reliable and accurate technology they can use day in, day out, is essential.”
“We also need to deliver these solutions at scale, which means bringing in the right strategic investors. We now have some of the world’s best engineers from Bosch working on our microclimate system, we have KPMG’s deep industry insights and commercial expertise, and AgFunder’s global community helping us bring solutions to growers in Australia and beyond,” Harvey said.
Gavin Smith, President of lead investor Bosch (Australia), said of their continued investment in The Yield: “We have partnered with The Yield as an investor and technology partner since 2015 because we believe that their vision for real-time agricultural data will transform farming productivity firstly in Australia, and extending to other parts of the world.”
“This partnership, and the unique attributes of our local market, present an exciting opportunity to establish Bosch Australia as a centre of competence in AgTech.”
Gary Wingrove, CEO of KPMG Australia, said this first-of-kind investment for KPMG was driven by a very clear strategic alignment, and the ability to offer tremendous potential to both businesses and their customers.
“This is not a passive investment for us. Our strategic relationship creates an opportunity to make a real difference to enhancing food growers’ profitability and competitiveness through the combination of The Yield’s innovative technology, and KPMG’s AgTech and IoT consulting capability.”
The Yield will be AgFunder’s first global investment from its new AgTech investment vehicle, which is currently being finalised. Michael Dean, AgFunder’s Australian Co-founder and CIO said The Yield’s key strength is their ability to monitor and deliver farmers actionable, granular, real- time insights into the micro-climates developing on their farms.”
“Developed and proven in harsh aquatic environments, the accuracy and reliability of The Yield’s technology and simple delivery of useful data is the perfect platform for producers of all types of high value crops such as nuts and berries. We are delighted to be an early stage investor in The Yield, and look forward to utilising our global network to assist with its development and expansion internationally,” Dean said.
Initial seed funding in The Yield included a $1m Accelerating Commercialisation Grant from the Australian Government in 2015.
Today’s investment will be used to bring Sensing+ for Agriculture to the Australian market in the second half of 2017, in addition to fast-tracking new product development and growing the company’s sales and marketing capabilities in Australia.