agritech)startups_indonesia

You have heard of Sayurbox, who just raised funding from e-commerce unicorn Tokopedia for its vegetable delivery solution this week, and Eragano, an end-to-end solution that connects farmers with industries to enable them to sell their harvests at a fair price and continuous quantity.

TaniHub, also a big player in the sector, positions itself as an e-commerce platform that focusses on providing capital and financial access to local farmers or SMEs. Another big name that has just got acquired by WarungPintar for its solution is Limakilo, a platform that connects farmers with direct vegetable sellers and small kiosks to sell the farmers’ harvest in a large quantity and become the harvest agents with financing access.

Indonesia certainly has no shortage of contenders in agritech startups, given one of the country’s biggest commodities was (and still) agriculture. In that sense, you need to know these five startups are around and doing well just below the nose.

iGrow Asia – the real-life Farmville

iGrow received funding from East Ventures and 500 Startups back in 2016. iGrow, founded by Andreas Senjaya in 2014, dedicated itself to assist and connect local farmers, landowners with lands that are not cultivated, agriculture customers, and agriculture investors using cloud-based agricultural management software.

It works by examining the vegetables and harvests with the highest demand, checking if the commodity has the price stability and good quality, before connecting farmers and lands available to use, then opening the investment opportunity to urban people.

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Investors who join will be given updates on the farm condition by surveyors and will get a plant-ownership certificate as a proof of investment. When it is harvest time, investors will be updated and sent the profit according to the agreement.

Jala – Shrimpin’ made easy

Ever thought that shrimp and technology would be in one sentence making a cohesive point? This startup sure did.

Jala offers shrimp farmers the ability to monitor water quality on shrimp ponds real-time, helping to minimise the risk of harvest failure. Its web-app provides analysis on water parameters to help farmers manage and treat their ponds in time.

Jala’s web-app comes in a package with the option of two tools that will help monitor, analyse and send data to the farmer’s smartphone, Jala Portable, and Jala Continuous.

A shrimp farmer himself since 2001, Aryo Wiryawan first came up with the business idea because he found it difficult to manage his shrimp farm remotely, wishing that there is some way to do it. The rest is history when he came out with an IoT system to monitor his farm, especially water quality, as it will lead to how the treatment should be done to prevent disease outbreak.

Just last year in March, Jala won Judges’ Choice category in the Echelon Top100 Indonesia Qualifier Roadshow, co-organised by e27 and DailySocial.

Simbah – The “Grandma” of all farmers

Simbah, means Grandma in Indonesian, describes itself as a social enterprise focussing on modern farming apps for helping farmers increase their productivity and B2B marketing.

Available features include buy and sell options that connect farmers to direct buyers, artificial intelligence system that answers farmer’s questions with credible knowledge, digital farming assistance, organic farming apps, and big data analysis for Indonesia’s modern farms aimed at government, academics, and stockholders.

Simbah is yet to receive any funding, but it has a big vision: to feed the world. Its missions include supporting farmers to be more productive, independent, and prosperous by providing B2B services.

RegoPantes – Javanese for “Fair Price”

Literally means Fair Price in Javanese language, RegoPantes connects farmers directly with buyers. Its platform, developed by 8Villages, showcases the social impacts of each transaction in the percentage, informing users about how much the farmers will get in the number.

In doing so, RegoPantes believes in supporting farmers to increase their income. Back in 2017, it was also endorsed by Ganjar Pranowo, the governor of Central Java of Indonesia, commemorating the National Farmers Day on September 23, in the country.

8Villages, the app’s developer, was founded in 2011 with the aim to contribute more with farmers in revolution industry 4.0 era and to connect rural farmers and urban consumers. Through RegoPantes, it offers a holistic solution to entailing farmers’ activities that combines cloud-based technologies and insights into mobile advertising.

RiTX – Smart farming for smarter farmers

RiTx Bertani is a platform founded by a farming technology faculty lecturer in top Indonesian university Gajah Mada University, Bayu Dwi Apri Nugroho, Ph.D. Just last month, RiTX was awarded “Certificate of Merit” from Public Sector Distinction category in Asia Smart App Awards 2019 Hong Kong.

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An Android-based application, RiTx focusses on the records of farming activities to help farmers apply Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), a proper cultivation practice with traceability principle that helps guarantee the safety of the produces, starting from the preparation before reaping season, all the way to the post-harvest products management.

RiTx is also integrated with soil and weather sensors set in the farm, maximising the Internet of Things aspect of the service.

The records allow farmers to get recommendations on a more precise farming activity. Often times, farmers miss out on the importance of sustainability with the use of unnecessary pesticides and fertilisers.

The development of RiTx already pocketed backings from governments, including the Ministry of Farm, Ministry of Industry, Ministry of Communication and Information, and Ministry of Villages and Underdeveloped Regions.

Indonesia has been and will remain a prime spot for more agritech innovation to emerge and flourish, as does the rest of Southeast Asia. These five names are set to disrupt the way the country and its true backbone -farmers- do farming by making the whole process more efficient and in favour of the farmers, because truly, what is a country without its main food resources?

Image Credit: Asep Supriadi on Unsplash