EarthOptics Secures $27.6 Million Series B Funding
Investment will advance data-driven agriculture through actionable soil insights
ARLINGTON, Va., January 18, 2023– EarthOptics, a leader in soil measurement and insights, today announced a round of strategic investments from both existing and new investors.
The $27.6 million round of funding, led by Conti Ventures, will further build out EarthOptics’ GroundOwl™ sensor suite capabilities, accelerate acreage growth and scale service providers. This increase in funding for product and service offerings to farmers and ranchers works to meet growing customer demand.
In addition to Conti Ventures, Rabo Food & Ag Innovation Fund (RFAIF), CNH Industrial, Louis Dreyfus Company Ventures, and CHS and Growmark’s Cooperative Ventures join current EarthOptics investors Leaps by Bayer, FHB Ventures, S2G Ventures, iSelect Fund, Route 66 Ventures, and Middleland Capital’s VTC Ventures.
“We believe EarthOptics has a clear advantage in soil measurement technology, as they improve the scalability of measurement while helping to reduce extrapolation error” said Chris Abbott, Co-Head of Conti Ventures. “As we look for technologies that can verify critical soil measurements for growers, we believe EarthOptics stands out in providing agronomic value as well as verification for initiatives like carbon credits.”
EarthOptics uses a combination of ground-based sensors, satellites, physical soil samples, machine learning models and agronomic expertise to help farmers and ranchers make better data-driven decisions about their land. This groundbreaking technology delivers insights to help farmers optimize fertilizer applications, make informed tillage decisions, quantify carbon sequestration and more.
“Our industry-leading technology has huge potential for farmers and agribusiness,” Lars Dyrud, EarthOptics CEO, said. “This funding will propel our growth and enable us to scale the SoilMapper™ platform.”
The Series B funding will expand access to valuable tools and deliver hyper-accurate soil insights, providing immediate cost savings for farmers, who recognize the importance of having comprehensive data about their soil.
“The revival of interest in soil is highly encouraging and much needed. Given the fundamental importance of soil health to the food and agriculture systems, we are excited to support Lars and his team in bringing EarthOptics’ truly disruptive solution to our bank’s global network of farmers, corporates, as well our ecosystem services teams of The Carbon Bank and ACORN,“ according to Pieter van der Meche, Head of RFAIF.
“With small margins and unpredictable input prices, farmers are looking for ways to improve productivity,” Dyrud said. “Our product does that in a way that fits seamlessly into individual operations. Farmers no longer must rely on expensive soil analysis from labs. Powerful soil insights from EarthOptics can transform the way decisions are made on the farm.”
“EarthOptics is a leading agriculture platform that accurately measures key aspects of soil health,” according to James Ramey of Middleland Capital’s VTC Ventures. “Ranging from compaction levels and nutrients through carbon sequestration, the company is perfectly positioned to deliver strong ROI for growers while advancing climate resilience initiatives.”
Recently, the USDA announced EarthOptics as a partner in their Climate Smart Partnership for six separate proposals. With this new momentum, EarthOptics continues to evaluate additional partnerships and work.
The announcement comes on the heels of a successful 2022 for EarthOptics, which saw ten times growth in acres covered and partnerships with global food companies.
At EarthOptics, we see soil. Differently. GroundTruth Ag, Inc., dba EarthOptics, was founded in 2018 and has offices in Raleigh, North Carolina; Arlington and Blacksburg, Virginia; Minneapolis, Minnesota; and Fayetteville, Arkansas. EarthOptics is an agricultural technology company developing next-generation soil-sensing technologies that give growers revolutionary insights into the physical characteristics of their soil. EarthOptics beat out three finalists and more than 100 international agtech startup entries to win the AGCO Innovation Challenge Award during the 2021 World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit. We believe that below-ground precision and innovation in the soil space is long overdue. Our ultimate goal is to deliver point-of-care soil health insights – related to physical, chemical, and biological attributes of soil – in real time. To achieve this goal, we have assembled a team with diverse backgrounds in engineering, software development, geospatial analytics, data science, machine learning, and logistics and operations.
About Conti Ventures
Conti Ventures is an investment team within Continental Grain Company and manages the investment vehicle that is leading this round of financing. Conti Ventures makes venture capital and growth equity investments in early-stage businesses that are using cutting‐edge technology to define the future of food and agriculture. Continental Grain Company (“Conti”) is a privately‐owned global investor, owner and operator of companies with more than 200 years of history across the food and agribusiness spectrum. Conti creates long‐term value by applying deep industry knowledge, capital and talent to businesses ranging from established market leaders to promising innovators. Visit www.continentalgrain.com to learn more.