Sprout offers entrepreneurial accelerator to burgeoning agritech start-ups

31/10/18

Farm to fork agritech start-ups nationally and internationally are being encouraged to come forward for the next cohort of the Sprout Accelerator.

The Sprout Accelerator benefits agritech businesses that have a prototype and existing revenue, but need extra support to help them grow. Eight New Zealand and four international agritech start-ups will enter the six month accelerator in 2019, the accelerator will provide assistance tailored specifically to their needs, focussing on three key areas that enable scalable growth; high margin business models, distribution, and execution advice from experienced entrepreneurs.

Along with the funding, the selected start-ups will also have access to an extensive mentoring programme and four fully-funded underground events hosted around New Zealand. These events are designed to upskill the start-up’s knowledge of the agritech and business industry.

The accelerator has been operating since 2015 and alumni have gone on to triple their sales, pitch their companies to investors, secure nationwide distribution agreements and see a 300% increase in their customers product yield.

Steven Ridder, CEO of Teralytics, a New York-based company that is building the world's first intelligent mobility operating system, was recently hosted by Sprout in New Zealand and is a supporter of the accelerator.

“Being hosted by Sprout gave me insight into how many parts of New Zealand’s agri sectors work, with direct connection to the people that would otherwise have taken me months to find and connect with. Sprout offers true acceleration on a new level that money alone can’t buy,” Ridder says.

Micropod, an agritech company that produces self-sustainable fresh microgreens, was one of the companies selected for the 2018 accelerator. Founder and CEO Jeffrey Xu says Sprout provided his team the tools they required to become great entrepreneurs and business people.

“The team of experts we worked with were very genuine and offered candid real world advice. They made sure we were hitting our milestones and held us accountable. Sprout’s network in the industry is second to none and really opened up many doors for us. We have learnt more about start-ups and about ourselves in the last six months, than in an entire year before joining Sprout,” Xu says.

Registrations for the Accelerator close on 4 November. Apply for the 2019 Sprout Accelerator at https://sproutagritech.com/

*Tandem Studios produced the weekly farming show "On The Land" and covered the winners at Fieldays during broadcast.