Agrista’s goal is to increase the capital available to farmers for them to raise their agricultural production to address the growing global food crisis.
Project: A technology platform to re-define existing agricultural finance structures
Agrista provides an online software service where farmers can store information about their farm and production, and exchange these data with their business partners and service providers.
The company also provides online software services to assist financiers to use information from the farmers to better design financing solutions for the specific farmer based on a deeper understanding of the financing requirement and credit risk.
Agrista’s solution allows financiers to use the growing crop or livestock as collateral by integrating business processes in real-time with crop insurers and commodity brokers. Credit facilities can therefore be structured to protect farmers against yield losses and a fall in future market prices.
The online exchange of information dramatically reduces the risks and costs for each participant in the agricultural value chain. Finance projects can then be structured at a fraction of the time previously needed, which allow financing volumes to scale rapidly in existing and new markets.
From space to industry
Farmers registering with Agrista’s system provide a map defining the size of their farming operation. This data is either captured using location technologies such as GPS or digitized from high-resolution satellite imagery. All farm map data is controlled for positional and descriptive qualities. This is also done using high- to medium-resolution satellite imagery, all less than 6 months old to guarantee the accuracy
The service also allows crop conditions to be monitored objectively using spectral satellite-based sensors. This information is used to control data received from the farmers. It is augmented with weather satellite data for parameters such as rainfall and temperature and derived yield indices. For insurance claims, crop damage assessments can be verified using high-resolution satellite imagery.
These space-based technologies were previously difficult and prohibitively expensive to get and use by the participants in the agricultural value chain. The Agrista service centralizes this data and makes it simultaneously available to multiple parties and is seamlessly integrated into each participant’s individual business processes. This not only reduces costs but also creates context to the data, dramatically improving user adoption of the technologies.
ESA Business Incubation
Agrista intends to work with multiple partners to deliver a solution to customers in the agricultural value chain. ESA's Business Incubation Center in Anwendungszentrum Oberpfaffenhofen (ESA BIC Oberpfaffenhofen) is partnering with the German Aerospace Centre DLR in providing assistance to incubatees. This provides Agrista with a valuable contact to a network of experts and other commercial service providers, specifically relevant to satellite-based data services.
At ESA BIC Oberpfaffenhofen Agrista is also receiving valuable expert guidance on developing a business model that allows the distribution of large data volumes globally at price points where individual participants derive business value. The support of ESA and its partners gives access to valuable demonstration data that are important for proof-of-concepts which is fundamental to get Agrista’s solution to market.
Agrista is being hosted at ESA BIC Oberpfaffenhofen
from December 2009 to November 2011.
Last update: 20 September 2011