Agrytech Program Batch III: Investment-ready despite the crises

Posted on October 1, 2020

They are not resilient; they are anti-fragile. With every problem and every incident they faced, they were either able to pivot or face it and change it into an opportunity.”

The Demo day is a staple of the third and final phase of the Agrytech Program. It is custom that startups who have made it this far into the program showcase a year’s worth of building their solution to a room full of experts, professionals, entrepreneurs and investors. This year the Demo Day of the third batch was turned into a virtual event organized within the Agri-food Innovation Day 2020.

“2020 has been a defining year for every individual and organization on the planet. At Berytech, it helped us define 8 market-ready products. I have worked with many entrepreneurs in the past few years but none of them where anywhere close to the ones I have met in this batch. They are not resilient; they are anti-fragile. With every problem and every incident they faced, they were either able to pivot or face it and change it into an opportunity,” says Mario Ramadan, Agrytech Accelerator Program Manager.

The eight (8) startups pitching have succeeded to complete the three phases of the program by developing their agri-food innovations across the value chain, working with science and technology to drive forward a sector that has been operating traditionally for too long.

“The 8 startups have made it to phase 3 of our Agrytech Accelerator programs. Phase 3 is the growth and incubation phase and it’s all about getting our startups investment ready. This means, in reality, working with them on getting more traction on the market, while perfecting the product on one hand and getting leads and converting them to customers on the other hand. In parallel it is also about getting all the documentation ready to be able to meet investors and pitch impactfully to them,” explains Joelle Atallah, Investment Specialist at Berytech.

 

FoodSight

FoodSight is an online platform connecting food manufacturers with freelance experts in the food industry who are ready to tackle challenges in food safety, food quality, and export-readiness. Services offered on the platform range from advisory to implementation on projects related to food production, standardization, regulation and compliance.

Food manufacturers will benefit because they can increase their sales by opening new export markets and improve their product quality and competitiveness.

By simplifying export requirements, more local-manufactured products will become viable for international export impacting the country’s GDP. The startup is adopting a freemium model by providing free access to online resources and a 25% cut on every transaction happening on the platform.

The team members are experts in biochemistry, food technology, quality assurance, and in food science. They need to raise $50K in funds to finalize the platform and onboard 10 customers in Lebanon before reaching out to new markets in 2021.

If you want to get in touch with the team, please click here.

 

FX Bar

The startup offers a range of healthy, on-the-go energy snacks that are nutritious and 100% natural. While many so-called healthy products contain artificial and non-healthy ingredients, FX Bar uses nutritious ingredients like bee pollen and natural honey. Their products are vegetarian friendly, wheat free, dairy free, low in sugar, egg free, corn and oil free.

The team at FX Bar has created an exciting and motivating digital experience to keep clients entertained that will be delivered to them on the platform every time they scan the QR code on the package. 

Their business taps into the Lebanese health and wellness snacks market valued at $80M while the economic crisis is limiting imported products, making FX Bar an ideal local replacement. They will be following a B2B model, selling at health food stores, diet centers, online stores, coffee shops, university cafeterias, gyms, sports shops, supermarkets, hiking agencies and natural reserves.

Their plan is to raise $50K to build a semi-automated line, invest in sales and marketing, and validate their products to export to the GCC.

If you want to get in touch with the team, please click here.

 

Ground Vertical Farming

Ground Vertical Farming is offering a complete vertical farming solution that include fully automated vertical panels, growing mediums, seeds, and fertilizers, in addition to a main controller. The solution can be operated all year-round and helps optimize the use of agricultural space and achieve the highest yield at the best quality, all the while reducing costs.

Ground offers greenhouse owners the possibility to better plan vegetables and greeneries despite the recession, economic crisis, climate change, lack of agriculture areas and high labor and energy expenses.

They’re tapping into a market estimated to reach $56M in Lebanon by 2023 an $5.8B worldwide. They’ve built their business model on the sales of panels and controllers, recurrent sales of mediums and seeds and monthly subscriptions for data access.

The team has a combined experience in landscape design, urban planning, biochemistry and pharmacology. The startup is working to raise $100,000 in funding to further develop their products, their nurseries, add new features to their growing medium, invest in sales and marketing, and grow their team.

If you want to get in touch with the team, please click here.

Karya

Karya  is a platform that connects people to memorable rural experiences linking hosts to users. The user can search for an experience, request a booking and pay online. The proposed experiences range from agritourism to food and culture while the user can build the journey by planning accommodation, food and even transportation on the platform.

Karya is building new rural experiences away from traditional touristic sites as the economic crisis and the pandemic have increased the demand for internal tourism. They will be making money through markups on provided experiences and accommodations and selling premium subscriptions.

Karya has already signed 120 contracts with hosts, registered a trademark, created a mobile app, and put together a dynamic team. They want to raise $200,000 in order to kick-start their operations, cover their first-year expenses, standardize their design, and start getting traction.

If you want to get in touch with the team, please click here.

 

Luxeed Robotics

The team at Luxeed Robotics is building a robot that uses a high precision laser to kill more than 85% of weed, to prevent crop losses caused by traditional solutions. Their solution is an affordable weeding service that brings a robot to onion fields every 20 days until the end of season creating a routine similar to what farmers are used to. Using laser technology will reduce the use of herbicides improving the quality and quantity of crops and reduce the cost of labor of manual weed removal.

They are tapping into a market of 9.5 million hectares of onion fields in the world while regulations to control the use of herbicides are growing stricter. Their price of laser weeding per dunum will be $350 and will decrease when the farmer’s number of onion dunums increase.

They are looking to raise $150,000 in funding for product development, covering the first year of operations  and marketing.

If you want to get in touch with the team, please click here.

 

Mezz’Mix

Mezz’Mix makes Lebanese sauces and condiments more accessible and easier to consume. The team has created a garlic dip that does not contain dairy, mayo or eggs sold in a squeezable bottle with a longer shelf life. They are aiming to change people’s habits shifting their garlic consumption from single-use to multiple-use.

The innovation is a bottle design making the product easier to use, with minimal waste while inviting for new ways of eating garlic. They have also created several flavors of the garlic paste and selling a variety of Lebanese condiments targeting end consumers.

The team has a combined experience in sales, entrepreneurship, food distribution, consumables, marketing strategy and business consultancy. They are looking to raise $110,000 in funding to buy machinery, grow their fleet and boost their marketing.

If you want to get in touch with the team, please click here.

 

Smart Land

Smart Land offers an auto-controlled irrigation and fertigation system to help farmers maximize their profits and reduce costs. The solution includes sensors to know the plant’s needs, a controller to regulate irrigation and fertigation system, electrical valves to open and close automatically, and a weather station to determine temperature and wind speed, all connected to a mobile app. The system helps farmers give crops water and fertilizers according to their needs, reducing costs and improving efficiency in irrigation and fertigation processes.

The market for irrigation and fertigation systems in Lebanon is estimated at $280M in 2020 and is expected to grow at an annual rate of 4%. The team will sell their control components with medium profit margins and subscriptions for maintenance assurance and mobile apps. To speed their growth, they will outsource some of their system equipment, and assemble it at the customer’s site directly.

The team members are experts in farming, electrical engineering, as well as hardware and software technology development. They want to raise $100,000 in order to finish their product development, kick start their operation with an inventory, and cover their first-year expenses.

If you want to get in touch with the team, please click here.

 

TheBeeHaus

TheBeeHaus offers the technology for beekeepers to monitor their apiaries, manage their business and optimize their honey production. While beekeepers are still using the same old practices, TheBeeHaus is giving them the opportunity for better production, better quality and better return on their investment. Their solution will reduce colony loss, reduce operational costs, increase honey quantity and quality, adding 25% more profit to the beekeeper’s business.

The team has developed simple plug-and-play devices that allow the beekeepers to remain connected to their hives and a connected mobile application that helps them easily monitor, manage and optimize their bee colony’s health and performance.

With 40 million Bee colonies in the MENA region and at a price of $55 per hive, TheBeeHaus team is aiming to serve a market of $220M where Lebanon alone is worth $1.4M, with no competition currently available. Their revenue model is based on one-time hardware sale and a yearly subscription fee for the mobile application.

The team has a combined experience in designing and developing hardware and software, and  in sales and marketing. They are aiming to raise $100,000 to start their hardware production, marketing, and operations.

If you want to get in touch with the team, please click here.


Watch the entire Demo Day session here.


Agrytech Accelerator Program
Berytech is sourcing the next agri-food innovators to help them grow their idea into a successful business with global impact. If you’re innovating in agriculture or food, join the fourth batch of the Agrytech Program and get up to $100k in funding and support to scale your business to success within 1 year. Learn more here