We have just received the wonderful news that one of our Agribusiness Members, SWAN Systems, was named as the AgTech winner at the FoodBytes! Pitch 2020 competition, a major international startup discovery program.
Based in Western Australia, the innovative precision irrigation and fertiliser platform was founded by farmers in 2016.
Run by global food and agribusiness bank Rabobank, FoodBytes! is an international program that showcases food and agri startup companies to corporate leaders, investors and the wider market. Competition winners in three different categories receive cash prizes and consulting support to contribute to their business growth.
SWAN Systems and fellow Australian AgTech startup, ProAgni from rural New South Wales, were among 15 finalists selected from an original field of nearly 340 applications from across 14 countries, based on their innovative solutions to major food system challenges.
“We’re thrilled to be the winners of the FoodBytes! agtech category. It’s great validation of the work we’re doing to create a more sustainable food system that can adapt to the challenges of today’s world. Living the problem in the world’s driest inhabited continent has driven the need for innovation in how water is managed.”SWAN Systems Co-Founder Rod Campbell
SWAN helps large-scale irrigators such as farmers to apply precisely the right amount of water and nutrients, at the right time. Taking data from a variety of field devices and converting it to actionable irrigation decisions, the software helps irrigators achieve optimal plant growth – whilst helping to minimise water wastage and fertiliser runoff.
“Our whole system is about enabling irrigators to make decisions from hard data, not assumptions. Agriculture accounts for 70% of global water withdrawals globally, so it’s critical that irrigators in the sector have a simple, science-backed, and scalable solution to reduce water wastage and minimise harmful environmental outcomes.”Tim Hyde, SWAN Systems CEO and Co-Founder
Ivor Gaylard, SWAN’s COO and Co-Founder, further emphasised this focus on providing value for farmers – as well as irrigators in other sectors such as public parklands and private turf. “We’ve designed the platform to be highly configurable based on location, soil type, plant variety, and more. We want all large-scale water managers to be able to benefit from the technology and tailor it to match their goals.”
Winning the competition and the networks formed in the FoodBytes! program will help SWAN with its planned expansion into the US in 2021. Specifically, the relationships with the other teams and alumni will provide valuable introductions to relevant partners and potential customers in international markets. Being in a current Series A investment raise, the opportunity to connect with corporate investors came at a great time for the Perth-based startup, which has ambitions to become the leading water and nutrient management tool for irrigators globally.
Congratulations to the team at SWAN.
You can learn more about them in our AgDirectory.