Online agtech marketplace, Hectare, raises £1.4m in new investment
London, 28th October 2019: Hectare Agritech today closes its Seedrs investment round at just over £1.4m. The fast growth start-up – which is the umbrella company to the UK’s number one online agricultural marketplaces SellMyLivestock (SML) and Graindex – overfunded beyond its original million pound target, closing at 142% of total funding.
The agtech has enjoyed rapid growth this year, with 22,845 new users joining its digital marketplaces in the last twelve months; meaning in just a year the company has increased its user base by almost two thirds (64%). Graindex and SML combined, for the last 12 months, have a listings value of over £103m, with Q3 2019 being their most successful business quarter to date, achieving £40.6m in listings value.
Hectare is at the forefront of agritech innovation within farming outputs; disrupting old-fashioned, physical, phone and paper-based trading mechanisms, and helping to make farmer’s lives easier. Hectare helps to save up to 12% of the traditional inefficiencies that farmers face, and ensures that they can conduct their trading from the comfort of their farm office – giving them back precious time too.
The investment will be used to drive further development within its product offering, such as offering access to finance, escrow, a haulage function for transporting livestock, and insurance. The funding will also be used to help bolster the marketing outputs of Hectare, to further drive customer acquisition and use with UK farmers and beyond. From an international perspective, the company is set to grow beyond the UK’s borders and this investment will help start to build Hectare’s global expansion plans.
Doug Bairner, the CEO of Hectare, commented: “We’re really pleased with where the round is finishing up. Exceeding our initial target will allow us to continue to build our UK farmer base while also further developing and marketing our new revenue-driving services like payments, finance and haulage. With all of the uncertainty and tough market conditions out there we are here to help farmers realise upto 12 percentage points of efficiencies in their trading. We are adding more and more services to turn Hectare into a full service trading platform to ensure we are giving farmers all the tools they need to conduct their business in the most efficient way.”
“The world is changing, and we want to help farmers change with it. Buying and selling online is like being at multiple physical markets at the same time, putting the power back into farmers’ hands when it comes to deciding who, when and how much they’re willing to buy and sell their livestock for.”
Hectare’s users are some of the most forward thinking farmers in the country. 61% of nominees for the Farmers Weekly Awards 2019 were Hectare users, these awards celebrate the very best of British farming by recognising and rewarding innovation, hard work and passion for agriculture. This shows that those at the forefront of the industry use either SML or Graindex.
Ashleigh Brown, Octopus Group
+44 (0)20 3772 8899| [email protected]
About SellMyLivestock (SML)
SellMyLivestock launched in 2014, and was founded by two friends, Dan Luff, a beef farmer and Jamie McInnes, a web developer. SML enables farmers to sell livestock online to other farmers, and processors, saving farmers both time and money, while also improving animal welfare, biosecurity and provenance. It has over 59,000 UK farms registered, which equates to approximately 40% of UK farms. SellMyLivestock has listed over £95 million of livestock, feed and bedding in the last twelve months, at a growth rate of 110% year-on-year.
Graindex is an online independent grain exchange. The platform was founded by arable farmer, Andrew Huxham, and entrepreneur and web developer, Jamie McInnes. Graindex launched in 2016 and now helps hundreds of UK farmers quickly and securely get a fair price for their combinable crops, connecting them to around 60 approved buyers.
Graindex is a business of Hectare Agritech. Along with its sister business, SellMyLivestock, listings have valued at over £103m in the last 12 months, growing at a rate of 101% annually. The business now has over 59,000 users, which is approximately 40% of UK farms.