AgriTech startup Wefarm has topped up its Seed round with an additional $5m.
The company’s round was led by True Ventures, a Silicon Valley-based VC, and drew support from Skype’s and Atomico’s founder Niklas Zennström, who invested in an angel capacity.
Other private investors in the round include WordPress’ founder Matt Mullenweg, Blue Bottle Coffee CEO Bryan Meehan. The Norrsken Foundation also joined the round alongside early backer LocalGlobe and Accelerated Digital Ventures (ADV).
Wefarm made headlines in late 2016 when it raised £1.3m from LocalGlobe to expand its user base, in a bid to give more small-scale farmers access to vital agricultural information, which can be reached offline.
The startup essentially operates a crowdsourced peer-to-peer network for offline farming communities and uses machine learning to source content and knowledge from a network of, the company claims, 600,000 farmers.
Wefarm is currently active in Kenya and Uganda and has plans to expand into other areas of Eastern and Sub-Saharan Africa.
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“We believe farmers are often the best and most relevant source of information and experience for other farmers,” said Kenny Ewan, founder and CEO of Wefarm.
“We’re proud to have created a network that empowers the close to one million farmers who use our service, and we’re excited to expand our reach and product capabilities this year.”
“Wefarm’s mission is incredible, and we’re ecstatic to support Kenny and his team,” said Jon Callaghan, co-founder of True Ventures. “The company democratizes technology, promotes the fluidity of information across an entire segment of the food supply, and helps farmers become more productive. Wefarm is the kind of movement True was designed for, and we are excited to empower this business and mission for the world.”
This time round, Wefarm will use the newly secured funds to develop commercial product offerings and work on new features.
“We invested in Wefarm because their innovative solution helps to achieve the United Nation’s sustainable development goals,” commented Anna Ryott, deputy CEO of the Norrsken Foundation. “It enables small farmers to become more efficient, thereby directly contributing to the eradication of hunger and poverty.”
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