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Rise Gardens grows with $9M Series A to help anyone be an indoor farmer – TechCrunch

As more consumers embrace plant-based diets and sustainable food practices Rise Garden Everyone is empowered to have a green thumb from the comfort of their home.

Chicago-based indoor smart hydroponics company has raised $ 9 million in a Series A round of oversubscription led by TELUS Ventures, with existing investors True Ventures and Amazon Alexa Fund and new investors Listen Ventures. You have to participate. Founder and CEO Hank Adams told TechCrunch about venture-backed investments since Rise was founded in 2017.

He started in 2017, but Adams, who has a background in sports technology, said he spent several years on prototypes before launching his first product in 2019. Rise’s IoT connectivity system is designed to grow vegetables, herbs and microgreens all year round.

Customers can choose from three system levels to start their first garden for about $ 300.

There is “a kind of joy” in being able to grow something, but people are seeking help because they don’t want to be a demanding and stressful hobby, Adams said. As a result, the mobile app that comes with Rise monitors water levels and plant progress and alerts users when watering, fertilizing, or caring for plants.

“People are paying attention to food, and they care what they eat,” he added. “Then, a pandemic was involved in this, and people were devoted to growing their food.”

In fact, customers were so enthusiastic about growing food that Rise Gardens sales exceeded seven digits in 2020 and the gardens sold out three times a year. Customers bought nearly 100,000 plants and harvested 50,000.

The company estimates that since its launch in 2019, more than £ 2,000 of food has not been wasted and has helped save 250,000 gallons of water.

The concept of an indoor farm is not new. Incumbents include AeroGarden and AeroGrow. Won According to Scotts-Miracle Gro and Click & Grow last November. Rise is one of the fundraising startups, including Gardyn.

However, Rise Gardens is designed to be the center of the room, distinguishing itself from its competitors by creating gardens out of powder-coated metal and glass. It also provides a way for people to experiment in their garden.

“I wanted something flexible because mastering my hobbies would be boring,” he added. “You can start from one level and replace the tray lid to grow denser. There is a microgreen kit that allows you to add or add plant support for tomatoes and peppers. Suspend snap peas. You can also make trellis. “

Adams will focus its Series A funding on product development, warehousing, manufacturing, expanding into new markets, and building teams, especially in the areas of customer service and marketing. Rise has about 25 employees and plans to hire an additional eight this year.

In addition, Rise Gardens products will soon be available on Amazon. This is the first non-website channel. The company has also expanded to what Adams calls “version 2.0” of the school garden.

When Rich Osborn, president and managing partner of TELUS Ventures, evaluated the indoor garden space, he told TechCrunch that Adams and his team were on the top of the list because of their background, data experience, and syndication with Amazon. It was.

Not only was there consumer demand for these types of products, but the sustainability and social implications of these types of investments could not be overemphasized, he said.

Nishan Majarian, co-founder and CEO of TELUSAgriculture, said that a variety of food growth is expected and crop management will be at the plant level.

“Climate Corp. Won With Monsanto, there was a large influx of agriculture to reach the next $ 1 billion exit, “Majarian added. “Agrifood is the last segmented supply chain. Every crop is different and every market is different, so for starters raising funds to solve these problems and scale up. , The local complex and fertile soil (intended for puns). “

Rise Gardens grows with $9M Series A to help anyone be an indoor farmer – TechCrunch Source link Rise Gardens grows with $9M Series A to help anyone be an indoor farmer – TechCrunch

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