Kiwi-Israeli agri-tech star CropX Technologies has attracted $50m (US$30m) of Series C financing, raising its value to over $200m. The funding will be used to further develop the company’s broad suite of digital farm management solutions, with water management as its core focus; and to acquire companies with complimentary technology.
Founded in New Zealand, CropX Technologies was then built up in Israel where it accreted deep hardware, sensor and software capability. The start-up has grown strongly in recent years through distribution partnerships. It has been boosted further through a successful program of well integrated strategic acquisitions. Led by CEO Tomer Tzach, CropX now operates in over 60 countries and is poised for further growth with the latest raise. CEO Tomer Tzach emphasised that CropX “is proud to be one of the consolidation leaders in ag-tech as we bring a complete, powerful and simple solution to farms and agribusinesses.”
CropX is operating intensively in NZ, where it began. It is increasingly a favoured platform for a range of New Zealand farmers in the dairy and Horticulture sectors. Its recent acquisition of NZ dairy water management start-up Regen has significantly boosted their presence in the dairy sector.
Former NZ Superfund guardian and early private investor in CropX, Ira Bing, told NBR that “CropX is a testament to the synergy between NZ agronomy, Israeli innovation and global ag-tech capital.” Marcel van den Assum, also an early CropX investor and Chair of Sprout Agritech says that “NZ-California Ag-Tech VC Finistere. led by Arama Kukutai, has been behind CropX throughout its journey and is a field leader in the NZ/Israel space.”
These New Zealand investors were clearly not the only ones to invest in the potential of NZ-Israeli partnership. Other notable institutional investors in former rounds include Pepsi Ventures, Eric Schmidt’s Innovation Endeavours, and Bayer Crop Science. The current Series C round was led by an ever widening group of AgTech investment heavyweights including round leader Aliaxis of Belgium, Edaphon Venture Capital from Holland, and NTT.
Commenting on their investment, CEO of Aliaxis Eric Olsen explained that “sustainable water management is at the heart of what we do at Aliaxis. Aliaxis Next is our division created to select, nurture and grow startups in the field of water management. CropX is the best in class for smarter irrigation systems in agriculture and we are thrilled to strengthen our partnership to allow farmers to save water while increasing crop efficiency and food production in a sustainable fashion.”
The Series C financing helps position CropX as a leader in agrarian fluid management solutions and will likely power a new level of value growth fuelled by more acquisitions. The company’s press statement emphasised that “food production accounts for roughly 70 per cent of total freshwater withdrawals globally and efficient water usage in agriculture is clearly becoming more and more important. Users of CropX’s irrigation planning are able to conserve irrigation water and boost yields. In addition to irrigation, the CropX system also optimises the use of energy and fertilisers, supports farmers in adopting more sustainable farming practices, and is becoming a one-stop-shop for crop management. CropX now has over 100 employees in the US, the Netherlands, Israel and New Zealand and a large R&D department”.