Technology

Toyota bets on autonomous agriculture by participating in the raising of $5 million from Agtonomy

Agtonomy, a hybrid platform of remote assistance and autonomy services in agriculture, raises $5 million. The startup announced on January 18, 2022 that it had raised these funds from Toyota Ventures, Flybridge, Hampton VC, E²JDJ, and Momenta. This economic contribution completes its seed collection, which amounts to a total of 9 million dollars. GV (formerly Google Ventures) and Grit Ventures also participated.

The start-up wants to respond to the lack of labor in agriculture and respond to certain environmental and sustainability issues. To do this, it wants to offer autonomous tractors to farmers.

A B2B Approach

The platform developed by Agtonomy transforms tractors and other agricultural equipment into autonomous machines. Agtonomy highlights its different B2B approach than its competitors in its marketing strategy. The startup intends to forge partnerships with equipment manufacturers and farm machinery manufacturers. It then transforms its agricultural machinery into autonomous, remote-controlled vehicles, easily usable by farmers.

It is up to the manufacturers to continue producing their machines and distributing them. The start-up focuses on the technological elements of its solution and the fact that they work with existing devices. Agtonomy does not detail its complete solution, but only uses a set of robust sensors and custom software. Farmers can then simply ask a farming machine to perform a task via the dedicated app.

A commercial launch in 2023

“Agtech solutions, such as autonomous teams and a state-of-the-art workforce, are needed more than ever” to meet the challenges facing agriculture, according to Tim Bucher, co-founder and CEO of ‘Agtonomy. Beyond agriculture, the start-up also wants to offer its services in land maintenance such as mowing, weeding and forest fire prevention through clearing.

Thanks to this fundraising, Agtonomy wants to speed up the development and testing of its platform. The startup wants to run around fifty pilots in the coming months and recruit around twenty people, TechCrunch reports. Tim Bucher says that he already has several autonomous electrical devices and has been running a PoC on his farm for a year. The founder ensures that these autonomous vehicles do almost all the work there. Agtonomy hopes to achieve a commercial launch in 2023 with a few hundred tractors that will cost around $50,000.

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