Since its inception in 2013, entrepreneurship@UBC has supported several hundred ventures that have gone on to raise financing, generate revenue, and create jobs across BC and Canada.
Among the successes of University of British Columbia’s esteemed incubator program is Verdi, which joined the HATCH Accelerator in 2021.
After graduating later that year, they were ready-to-raise.
Verdi helps farms and vineyards contend with fluctuations in weather by “making infrastructure smart,” building technology-based products “to help the food system keep pace with climate change.”
The company says its digital-based platform allows growers to build, manage, and scale precision agriculture systems that work for them “by connecting sophisticated software and modular hardware with the farm data layer.”
The Verdi platform is a digital interface utilizing specialized devices that sit on existing irrigation infrastructure within crop rows to control tiny valves for water and fertilizer, according to the company.
In one example with Aterra Wines Canada applying the technology, Verdi noted 8% more revenue per acre and 10% less water and fertilizer usage.
“We’ve built the most scalable and reliable systems to customize water and fertilizer at the plant level, making variable rate irrigation a reality for growers,” Verdi has stated online, promising the ability to “overcome crop variability to improve yield and quality while reducing inputs.”
The precision agtech startup was recently named to the Foresight 50, which recognizes ventures from across Canada and a variety of sectors including watertech, carbon solutions, hydrogen, and renewable energy.
In addition to accolades from Foresight, the startup has some funding under its belt.
Earlier this year, Innovate BC and the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program provided a combined total of $2 million in research and development funding to help 14 companies pilot technologies and create jobs across BC. Among them was Verdi.
With refined products and fresh funding, Verdi is looking to once again accelerate its next phase of growth.
This month, Cultivator’s Agtech Accelerator announced 16 startups selected to participate in their second cohort and two Vancouver startups made the cut: Verdi and fellow winemaking innovator BarrwelWise.
Agtech Accelerator is a venture-backed program that combines agriculture and technology to accelerate the development of agriculture technology startups in Canada and beyond.
One cohort each year, from March to June, will go through programming—connecting founders to expert mentors, investors, service providers, and producers in the industry.
At the end, founders pitch their company at Demo Day as an opportunity to gain more exposure on the main stage of Canada’s Farm Show in Saskatchewan.
The inaugural cohort of the Agtech Accelerator yielded success in 2022, raising a combined $31 million in private capital, generating $16 million in revenue, and receiving $19 million in public funding.
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