Soil technology startup Krishitantra on Wednesday announced that it has raised $1 million (Rs 7.6 crore) in seed funding from NABVENTURES and Omnivore.
The company provides rapid IoT-based soil testing and soil nutrition advisory solutions to farmers, farmer producer organisations (FPOs), and agribusiness stakeholders.
Based in Hyderabad, Krishitantra was co-founded in 2017 by Sandeep Kondaji, Dr. Vishnuprasada Bhat, and Anand Bellan Raman. The company has developed a highly portable IoT device, branded as Krishi RASTAA, that generates soil test results within 30 minutes, precisely analysing macro nutrients, micronutrients, pH, organic carbon, EC, and microbial counts. Based on the soil test results, crop-specific soil nutrition recommendations are automatically generated and sent to farmers.
Krishitantra aims to optimise fertilizer application for farmers, increasing crop yields, reducing the cost of cultivation, and improving soil health. At scale, the company believes it can have a major impact reducing GHG emissions while promoting sustainable agriculture and soil conservation.
Its clients include farmers, FPOs, agribusiness companies, soil testing labs, and other agritech startups. While currently focused on the Indian market, Krishitantra also plans to enter select Southeast Asian countries in the near future.
Commenting on the investment, Sandeep Kondaji, co-founder and chief executive officer of Krishitantra, noted, "This funding from India's leading agritech investors, Omnivore and NABVENTURES, will give us wings to soar. We plan to use the funding to expand our operations across India, reaching lakhs of farmers and helping them realize increased profitability and sustainability via improved soil health."
According to Dr GR Chintala, chairman NABARD and NABVENTURES, "Rapid soil testing along with real-time agronomy digitises an important component of farm extension services. The data play at the farm level is of huge value. This affordable solution would benefit farmers, FPOs, and other players in the agri ecosystem. Krishitantra has a market winning solution in the making."
Gills John, vice president, NABVENTURES said, "Sandeep and the founding team at Krishitantra have built a cost-effective, rapid soil testing solution which can go a long way in addressing the problem of soil fertility and encourage a shift towards precision agriculture in India. NABVENTURES will help Krishitantra accelerate the spread of its soil testing technology by connecting them with our network of FPOs and leveraging NABARD’s pan-India presence."
Abhilash Sethi, Principal, Omnivore said, "Proper soil management is the first step in successful farming. Currently, Indian farmers are unable to accurately test their soil and as a result, fail to use fertilizers in an optimal manner. Omnivore is investing in Krishitantra to democratise precision soil testing and soil nutrition advisory for farmers."