Agtech Startup Bushel Announces Series B Raise

This week Bushel announced that it raised $19.5 million in a Series B funding.  The Fargo, North Dakota based company has consistently attracted money from around the country that is seeking to participate in the growing ag-tech market.  Fargo is one of the leading communities launching ag-tech startups in the region – including the Farm…

Photo Stock from Pixabay

This week Bushel announced that it raised $19.5 million in a Series B funding.  The Fargo, North Dakota based company has consistently attracted money from around the country that is seeking to participate in the growing ag-tech market.  Fargo is one of the leading communities launching ag-tech startups in the region – including the Farm which was announced in early fall 2019.https://blogs.microsoft.com/on-the-issues/2019/10/17/techspark-fargo-grand-farm-project-will-create-the-farm-of-the-future/ 

Bushel’s basic business model is to amplify and accentuate applications that improve communication between farmers and grain companies.  The company does this by connecting grain elevators and physical commodity buyers with growers.  Moreover, the company augments data from other sources to digitize the analog structures that are currently in place.  According to the company’s website: “Digital infrastructure… is the wild west: archaic, non-standard, individualistic, and protectionist. Elevators aren’t connected to their growers, one another, or processing centers.”  

Fundamentally, Bushel believes that the overall ag industry can be transformed through digitizing these types of communications channels and improving digital information about the underlying commodities and ag businesses.  They believe that this is already happening and much of the work is being done in the Silicon Prairie. 

“In the context of the startup world, Farmers Business Network, Indigo, and other players are in the middlemen and disruption positions. We say that we are basically building on the relationship or elevating the relationship of the farmer and grain company,” Jake Joraanstad, Bushel co-founder and CEO told Ag Funder News in an interview announcing the new funding round. “The physical infrastructure and players have been at the business for the last 100 years and just need help thinking about the tech aspect. We are trying to embolden a technology roadmap to compete against new disruptions.” https://agfundernews.com/breaking-bushel-wants-to-enhance-not-disrupt-grain-trading-with-19-5m-series-b.html 

The Bushel business model is straight forward in that the buyer is the grain company – and commodity growers use the product for free.  This translates a two-sided problem into a one-sided opportunity where Bushel can sell the elevators and other grain buyers – rather than having to also sell farmers a product.  The challenge will still be getting user data but the value proposition is significant regarding the types of data that farmers need to ensmarten themselves about markets. 

“The farmer uses the tool for free. The grain company buys our platform from us and we install it agnostically across their system. The farmer gets the benefit of not just seeing pricing info with the company but seeing everything such as a scale ticket minutes after making a load delivery, signing grain contracts, and when they are getting paid for which contracts,” Joraanstad said in the same AFN interview. 

For more information about Bushel, check out their website at https://bushelpowered.com

For more information about Fargo start-ups, check out an earlier article by Silicon Prairie News about North Dakota.  At the time Myriad Mobile (which is now called Bushel) was listed after their Series A fundraise. http://siliconprairienews.com/2018/08/fargo-nd-sees-over-21m-in-investments-so-far-in-2018/ 

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