We regularly run challenges and pitch day competitions to identify early-stage companies focused on different areas of agtech and foodtech to make investments in. The winners of these challenges receive funding without program participation or re-location requirements. Here’s some information on our current and past challenges.
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Challenge Closed, Applications in Review
Winners will be announced in September, 2019
Investment: Winner to receive up to $250k in funding
We teamed up with OurCrowd and Startup Nation Central to hold our first challenge to fund a Agtech/Foodtech startup in a specific geography – Israel. The winner of The Radicle Challenge Israel will receive Radicle’s first investment specifically targeted at entrepreneurs in Israel, a market where Agtech innovation is significantly growing.
As announced at the 2019 OurCrowd Global Investor Summit, the most promising pre-seed Agtech and Foodtech companies in Israel will not only receive the funding from Radicle Growth, but will have access to a global Agtech network, connection to Radicle’s venture partners and strategic alliances and access to Radicle’s acceleration platform.
Investment: Growth-Stage companies will be competing for a $1M USD investment and Seed-Stage companies for a $250K USD investment.
We’ve teamed up with Nutrien, the world’s largest provider of crop inputs, services, and solutions, to drive ag and food tech innovation in Canada. The Nutrien-Radicle Challenge Canada has been created to transform the speed of innovation for Canadian entrepreneurs. Together we’ll find the top Growth-Stage and the top Seed-Stage ag and food tech companies in Canada, invest in them and provide access to the Radicle and Nutrien platforms to accelerate the development of technologies in the sectors.
This is our second Challenge whereby investment will be made in the most promising ag and food technologies in a specific geography (we pioneered this concept in Israel earlier this year).
Eight Canadian Food and Agtech Innovators Selected to Compete for USD$1.25m
The finalists in the US$1 million growth-stage category are:
- FarmLead, Ottawa, ON – A marketplace that enables grain farmers and buyers to prospect, negotiate, and execute grain deals within a trusted network.
- Renaissance Bioscience, Vancouver, BC – A bioengineering company that uses yeast as a platform microbe to create valuable industrial products for commercial partners.
- P&P Optica, Waterloo, ON – A food processing technology provider that leverages hyperspectral imaging to detect foreign objects and assess food quality.
- Terramera, Vancouver, BC – A developer of high-performance natural alternatives to synthetic chemical pesticides and fertilizers that has pioneered a method to target active ingredients to cellular delivery.
The finalists in the US$250,000 early-stage category are:
- First Pass Technologies, Calgary, AB – Uses machine learning to optimize route selection within a farm by integrating into existing, embedded guidance hardware supplied by equipment manufacturers.
- Livestock Water Recycling, Calgary, AB – Segregates and concentrates manure nutrients into two valuable fertilizer products while recycling clean water for reuse.
- Motorleaf, Montreal, PQ – Uses artificial intelligence to make precise and automated yield forecasts for commercial hydroponic greenhouses.
- Precision.ai, Saskatoon, SK – Builds artificially intelligent drones that autonomously survey fields in real-time to recognize plant growth and spot-spray weeds with surgically targeted micro-doses.
“Winning the Radicle Challenge is a major milestone validating Aromyx’s technology. While the technology has applications for a broad range of industries, agriculture is a primary focus and we see massive opportunities to disrupt current practices. Bringing a disruptive technology to an established marketplace is not easy, and we are excited to be partnering with Radicle and their network to accelerate our development efforts and find the optimal product-market fits.” Josh Silverman, Aromyx, Inc. CEO
About the Challenge
For a second year, we teamed up with World Agri-Tech to host the pre-summit Pitch Day in San Francisco. Entries consisted of over 150 seed-stage Agtech and Foodtech companies. Eight early-stage technology companies were then selected to pitch their solutions to a panel of judges and an audience of high-ranking investors and agribusiness leaders
“Increasingly, farmers demand all-in-one solutions for their agriculture data. In response, agtech companies both large and small are quickly forming partnerships and programmatic connections between their data platforms via APIs. However, we see the vast majority of agtech companies struggling to implement and maintain their partnerships at a technical level while balancing the development of their core products. Our solution allows them to activate instant connections with their partners and remain focused on their own innovations. We’re honored to be recognized as the winner of the GPS Challenge and excited to continue our network’s expansion into North America with our new strategic partners at Radicle Growth.” G. Bailey Stockdale, Leaf Agriculture CEO
About the Challenge
The GPS Challenge called on agtech and foodtech startups from around the world that were taking part in an incubator or accelerator program to apply for investment. Radicle evaluated the applicants to identify and accelerate the development of the most promising pre-seed agtech and foodtech companie(s) in the world. Through investing the amount they need to be successful at the pre-seed stage, preparing them for their next round of funding, and providing them access to Radicle’s platform, Radicle helps change the trajectory of companies in their infancy.
“84% of the US crop workforce tends to largely non-mechanized fruit, vegetable, and nursery production, but rising wages and a shrinking workforce are driving growers of these specialty crops to turn to robots to reduce labor needs and costs,” said Charlie Andersen, CEO and founder, Augean Robotics. “We are thrilled to have this investor support, which will allow us to accelerate the commercialization of Burro and to develop the proprietary datasets needed to enable further autonomy.”
About the Challenge