Ignitia closed their investment round of 1.4 million USD, at the valuation of 11 million USD. Making up this funding round, Ignitia is proud to be backed by three investors – Hack VC, with FINCA Ventures and the Norrsken Foundation closing out the investment round. The primary backer, Hack VC, is a venture capital firm from San Francisco, which invests in early-stage startups. They became interested in Ignitia after Ignitia was named a Google Moonshot in 2015 – one of 33 companies around the world, selected for their “unique and innovative use of technology to solve a complex, global problem.”
Managing Partner of Hack VC, Ed Roman said they are ‘very proud to be partnering with Ignitia. The mission driven culture and societal impact of the organization resonates strongly with us. It’s a great example of what can be accomplished when you blend of social entrepreneurship with a venture scale opportunity. Tom Chi from Hack VC added, “Ignitia is a rare company for both the quality of science they’ve done and for having used those breakthroughs to serve some of the world’s most disadvantaged peoples. There are more than 500 million small landholder farms, and Ignitia is helping them to save money on inputs, grow healthier crops, and lift themselves and their families out of poverty. I’m excited both for Ignitia as a company and for the example it sets for others about what is possible from working closely with new communities to solve world-caliber problems.”
FINCA Ventures, an impact investing initiative of microfinance pioneer FINCA International, has also joined the funding round. FINCA Ventures provides patient capital and support to early-stage social enterprises serving the bottom of the pyramid. Norrsken is a Stockholm-based investor that focuses on impact tech entrepreneurship, with investments in companies with the potential to radically improve the world. The investment will be used to focus on expanding Ignitia’s presence in Nigeria with a focus on partnerships with the agricultural supply chain.
Ignitia is the world’s first tropical weather forecasting company. Headquartered in Sweden with subsidiaries in Ghana and Nigeria, Ignitia has developed a highly accurate, hyper-local weather forecast delivered via SMS to farmers across West Africa. Ignitia’s model uses satellite data in partnership with major telecommunications firms to pinpoint farmer locations, and provide forecasts with over 84% accuracy and to a 3 square km range. Ignitia is currently active in three West African countries (Ghana, Mali, Nigeria) with over 500 000 active subscribers.
Ignitia’s mission is to provide accurate weather forecasts that help farmers make better-informed decisions to improve their farming practices, thus increasing their yields and maximizing their profits to play a key part in stabilizing the value chain as a whole. According to one study from UC Berkeley, the service increases yields by 65% across all crops.
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