Home-grown agrifoodtech accelerator and investment company Sprout is putting the call out for registrations from entrepreneurs who are ready for serious acceleration and a shot at their share of seed-stage investment, as well as dedicated mentorship and connection with global networks.
As the leading agrifoodtech accelerator and investment company in New Zealand, Sprout’s Lead Mentor, Jonathan Good, says that the scope of the opportunity is massive.
“As a planet, we will need to sustainably feed more than 10 billion people by 2050. This will require us to transform food and agriculture on a global scale, and we have the entrepreneurs right here who are willing to question the status quo, and create a better future.”
With a strong portfolio of active investments, Sprout has successfully partnered with over 70 companies – jumping into their businesses for three months to connect them with the mentors, markets and investors that will help take their businesses global.
Members of the current Sprout Accelerator cohort and owners of Viktual+, a wellbeing supplement company that combines ancient Māori and Pasifika wisdom and New Zealand ingredients, Rochelle and Fa’alogo Tana Umaga say that they are keen to share the Accelerator with other businesses after experiencing it for themselves.
“We started Viktual+ just over a year ago and knew we were onto a good thing. But this is new for us, and looking back it feels like we were lacking some clear direction. Since joining the Accelerator, the guidance of the mentors and resources available have shown us the direction that we need to go to take our products global and challenge some of the more well known brands locally.”
“Sprout has good people who know their stuff; people that are willing to get into our business and help to grow our people.”
Recent Sprout Accelerator Alumnus and founders of ProTag, a dairy cow health technology business, Baden Parr and Tyrel Glass, showcase this partnership in action.
“For us, being able to reach our goal basically comes down to surrounding ourselves with people and expertise that we don’t have. Sprout has been phenomenal for that – it’s actually kind of mind blowing!” says Parr.
Sprout Investment Manager, Warren Bebb, says that while a simple idea, the execution of ProTag is what has attracted the attention of Sprout.
“ProTag, is essentially a Fitbit for cows, with technology that currently provides farmers with the data on when their cows are ovulating, with the company planning to incorporate additional tracking insights in the near future – at a much more competitive price point, with much smarter technology than their competitors. They are aiming for their technology to be implemented on 15% of New Zealand dairy farms by 2027, with plans to expand into global markets.”
Good says that a common theme they have seen throughout past Accelerators is the lack of awareness amongst entrepreneurs of the scale of the agtech and foodtech markets.
“We have the experience and networks to partner with companies, take a good idea and scale it significantly, including highlighting different potential applications. If you are involved with an agtech or foodtech company with a prototype or at proof-of-concept stage, and you are looking for investment to help you scale – register for the Sprout Accelerator today.”
For more information and to register for the 2022 Sprout Accelerator cohort, visit sproutagritech.com/accelerator-information/. Applications close 4 June 2022.