Data Snapshot is a regular AFN feature in which we analyze agrifoodtech market investment data provided by our parent company, AgFunder.
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Asia-Pacific Agribusiness Marketplaces scooped up $628 million in 2021, according to AgFunder’s first-ever Asia-Pacific AgriFoodtech Investment Report.
“Agribusiness Marketplaces” is AgFunder’s term for online marketplace platforms that link farmers to a variety of services, from inputs to customers to agronomic support to financing. They aim to increase supply chain efficiency and more access to goods and customers.
Agribusiness Marketplaces’ strong performance underscores its potential to positively impact the Asia-Pacific region, which generates roughly 30% of all global agrifoodtech financing activity.
Estimates predict Asia-Pacific will account for 60% of global consumption by 2030. Millions in this region are smallholder farmers struggling to access inputs and sell to customers; funding for Agribusiness Marketplaces is one way investors can help alleviate such problems.
The vital role of Agribusiness Marketplaces
Asia-Pacific is home to some 450 million smallholder farmers that contribute up to 80% of the region’s food supply. And yet, these farms, typically no bigger than a couple of hectares (five acres), struggle to access seeds, fertilizers and other inputs vital to healthy yields.
As AgFunder’s report notes, smallholder farmers are usually “at the behest of their local dealers.” They might even deal with six to seven layers of middlemen between them and the consumer, making it difficult to sell their wares.
In response to these challenges, startups are emerging that aggregate farmers into local hubs, giving them access to better products, more buying power, and direct relationships with customers.
Agribusiness Marketplaces top deals & countries
India led the category in 2021, with startups raking in $364 million in total. This is in keeping with India’s overall dominance in the region when it comes to funding.
End-to-end agricultural services marketplace DeHaat delivered two rounds of funding in 2021, including a $115 million Series D round co-led by Belgium’s Sofina and the Indian branch of the UK’s Lightrock.
Also in India, mobile marketplace AgroStar scored a $70 million Series D round at the very end of 2021. Captain Fresh raised $40 million for its seafood supply chain platform.
Indonesia was also a strong country for Agribusiness Marketplaces, raising $149 million total from the likes of TaniHub ($65.5 million), sea-to-table app Aruna ($35 million) and others.
Korea took third place thanks to a single $60 million Series C round from Tridge.