USA – Agro.Club, a U.S.-based startup transforming the way the agriculture industry buys and sells, has initiated plans to expand into Europe and North America following the closure of a US$1.5 million seed round.

The funding round was led by Speedinvest, with participation from Elevator Ventures, the corporate venture arm of Raiffeisen Bank International.

Agro.Сlub has developed a digital system that connects farmers, retailers, manufacturers, food companies and suppliers with a view of increasing efficiency and transparency in the agriculture industry.

Agro.Club was founded by Egor Kirin who has spent his entire career running large businesses for agriculture multinationals across the world. As an industry insider, he realized how much efficiency technology can add to the value chain, and set out to build a digital platform that encompasses all existing players, rather than trying to replace them.

The startup highlights that farmers have historically been the risk-takers working in a non-transparent market. However, at the same time, Kirin observes that “agriculture tech startups tend to want to disrupt the big, incumbent players.

“We think that’s the wrong approach. We want to give the whole industry a more efficient way of doing business.”

The company says that its platform gives farmers safe and simple access to thousands of crop buyers and suppliers to sell grain for maximum profit, or efficiently buy supplies and equipment.

The startup launched its platform in Russia and has managed to sign up 20% of farmers in the US$20 billion market within just the first 18 months since the launch, registering millions of dollars in transactions on a monthly basis.

Propelled by the success, Agro.Club plans to bring its platform to the US$200 billion markets of North America and Europe. Agro.Club has taken the same approach of efficient, inclusive innovation for the launch of its digital ecosystem for North America.

The startup said that its mobile app empowers farmers by giving them access to multinational giants, independent manufacturers, trusted retailers, grain exporters and food companies.

This, according to the company, opens up new opportunities for players of all sizes, while providing a closer relationship with farmers and platform support across the whole value chain, from seed to grain at the port.

In Russia, the company revealed that more than 4,000 grain companies have signed up, and the startup has agreements in place with major agriculture multinationals.

“Retailers, manufacturers, and grain companies benefit from Agro.Club’s enterprise solution that allows them to run their campaigns more effectively, serve their farm customers better, and optimize the costs,” Agro.Club says.

Following the investment round, industry executive Neil Arbuckle has joined Agro.Club as the Managing Director for Canada. Also joining the North America team as Campaign Strategist is Erin Romeo, a leading agriculture marketeer in the region.