BASF invests in London-based agritech startup Hummingbird Technologies

UK – BASF Venture Capital, the investment arm of German agribusiness company, BASF has invested in Hummingbird Technologies, global leader in advanced crop analytics headquartered in London.

Other major investors in this series B investment round included Canada’s TELUS Ventures Saudi Agricultural and Livestock Investment Company (SALIC) and the British investment firm Downing Ventures.

Founded in 2016, Hummingbird Technologies has developed a technology platform to evaluate the condition of agricultural fields.

Hummingbird’s unique artificial intelligence, deep learning and imagery analytics solution uses proprietary algorithms driven by aerial images captured from satellites, planes and unmanned aerial vehicles.

It processes image data to create precise harvest forecasts or accurately calculate how much fertilizer is needed as well as locate potential pest infestation, plant diseases or planting gaps.

The funds will support advancements in remote sensing, artificial intelligence, machine learning and data analytics for in-field precision farming.

Commenting on the investment Will Wells, Chief Executive Officer, Hummingbird Technologies said, “We are delighted to have received investment from BASF and TELUS Ventures.

“The investment will allow us to augment our leading position in core international markets, to pursue expansion opportunities that involve API (Application Program Interface) software integration and to extend our machine learning advantage at both a team and code level.

“We have a clear target to become the leading global remote sensing player in AgTech, and with such strong institutional backers, and technical expertise behind us, our journey towards achieving this goal has gathered serious momentum.”

Hummingbird’s high-resolution system delivers real-time actionable recommendations, which both improve performance on farms through precise targeting of operations and inputs.

The technology also provides evidence-based justification and Return on Investment (ROI) proof for decision-making.

Within 24 hours, Hummingbird claims that its can provide farmers with in-field zone maps that help them specifically target the application of fertilizers, crop protection products and growth regulators as well as selectively manage subsequent plantings.

“We want to support Hummingbird to develop new markets for its unique technology and establish new business models,” said Markus Solibieda, Managing Director, BASF Venture Capital.

“Our colleagues in BASF’s Agricultural Solutions division are already cooperating with Hummingbird.

“We are supporting these activities through this investment.” Agricultural experts from BASF UK have been working with the startup since 2016 and supply aerial images to farmers.

“Hummingbird analyzes these photos and gives farmers detailed maps of the various in-field zones for precision farming.

Rich Osborn, Managing Partner, TELUS Ventures added. “We believe innovative companies like Hummingbird –have the potential for wide-scale adoption as farmers increasingly look for tools to improve their bottom lines and reduce their environmental impact.

“Through our investment, we have the potential to change cultivation and help mature technology platforms to connect all aspects of the farm and food supply chain.”

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