Agtech is Booming in Belgrade and Novi Sad’s Startup Ecosystem
Belgrade and Novi Sad’s startup ecosystem is seeing great success in Gaming and Blockchain technologies, as per Startup Genome's Global Startup Ecosystem Report 2019. However, these are not the only tech sub-sectors that are thriving in this region. As a country with a developed agriculture market, some companies have decided to cross-fertilize two local strengths - agriculture and information technology.
One of those companies is Belgrade-based startup, Agremo, a cloud-based software platform which uses artificial intelligence, computer vision, and machine learning to extract insights from aerial imagery in order to improve agricultural processes. Agremo is developing a software platform for agricultural producers, growers, and anyone who deals with the health of land and crops. With over 3,000 users in 50 countries, they are working on a new version with additional functions and benefits for agriculturists. They were chosen as one of the fifteen next generation startups which are revolutionizing the future of sustainable food and agriculture to pitch at FoodBytes in September 2019 in Chicago.
Another local Agtech startup to know is Agrivi. This company builds knowledge-based farm management solutions that address various stakeholders of the agricultural industry – farmers of all sizes, agricultural cooperatives, food sourcing industry, financial industry, NGOs, governments, and all other parties interested in achieving sustainable and resource-efficient agricultural production in their network of farmers. They are present in more than 150 countries and thousands of farmers are using their product to manage and improve crop production. Agrivi also received the title of the world's best startup in 2014 by winning the 1st prize on the World Startup Competition held in Seoul, Korea,and their CEO & Founder, Matija Zulj, is on the list of Europe's top tech innovators.
Local Agtech startups are buoyed by local programs specifically focused on this sub-sector. Novi Sad based BioSense Institute has developed an Agtech accelerator program, as a part of ANTRES project, supported by European Commission and the Republic of Serbia. This is the first initiative of its kind in the Belgrade and Novi Sad ecosystem. The program runs from October until December 2019 in Novi Sad and it will provide the opportunity for local entrepreneurs, startups, and small businesses to contribute to the digitization of agriculture through the development of new solutions and the improvement of existing ones. The program is looking for companies that have an MVP or are in an early development phase. All startups that will participate in the program will, through weekly workshops, mentorship, thematic lectures and other events, gain experience and knowledge that will enable them to test the sustainability and feasibility of their business ideas and digital solutions to create a proof of concept. The best startups will also have an opportunity to use BioSense Institute scientific research resources.
The Head of Business Development at Bio Sense Institute, Grigoris Chatzikostas, shares that "BioSense recognizes the importance of traditional industries, such as agriculture. Our goal is to connect them [startups] with the ICT sector and create a testing ground for entrepreneurship and improvement of existing capacities."
Are you interested in getting involved in the Agtech scene in Belgrade and Novi Sad? You are in luck! The Business Incubator Novi Sad is hosting a Startup Weekend on the topic on Friday, September 27 - 29, 2019. More details here.