Impact investor Omnivore Capital Management Advisors and venture capital firm Accel India Management have co-led a $5.5 million Series A funding round in business-to-business (B2B) agritech startup Clover Ventures.
Venture capital firm Mayfield also joined the round. Mayfield and Accel are returning investors in the Bengaluru-based startup, which last raised an undisclosed seed round in 2018, according to a statement on Thursday.
“This additional funding will help to accelerate the growth of our managed farm network, support our entry into new cities, and diversify our B2B and B2C fresh produce offerings,” co-founder Avinash BR at Clover said.
Clover is a greenhouse-based agritech platform, which consists of a network of farmers in India. It claims to sell only premium quality, greenhouse-grown fresh produce through its B2B and B2C channels.
Clover, which supports demand-led cultivation, counts the B2B channel as its primary line of business, Omnivore’s managing partner Mark Kahn told TechCircle.
“We believe that Clover is building India’s first fresh produce supply chain adapted to the challenge of climate change. By leveraging peri-urban greenhouses, Clover can deliver the highest quality vegetables and fruits to B2B and B2C consumers in India’s largest metro areas,” Kahn added.
The startup, Kahn said, has a first mover advantage of because the cultivation is all in-house, with the greenhouses, which in turn grows premium produce given the controlled environment.
Clover was co-founded by BR, Gururaj Rao, Arvind Murali, and Santhosh Narasipura. Former-Bosch executive BR previously worked as a venture investor with Aavishkaar.
Rao’s corporate experience includes roles at Myntra, CallidusCloud, and Info Edge. Murali was earlier based in the Gulf in various sales management roles while Santhosh worked in his family’s manufacturing business, the statement added.
Omnivore has been an active investor in the agritech space. In January, it co-invested in B2B food commodity marketplace TechnifyBiz’s parent company Connedit Business Solutions in a $2 million seed round.
In December, it was part of a Series B closing round worth $6 million in Pune-based agritech startup Ecozen Solutions. In October, it teamed up with Singapore-based early stage investor Wavemaker Partners and other investors in a $1.6 million seed fundraise at agriculture analytics platform Fasal.
Ninjacart is another name in the B2B agriculture space with its network of farmers and retailers. In December, retail giant Walmart and its Indian ecommerce arm Flipkart made a joint investment in 63Ideas Infolabs-owned Ninjacart, in a bid to power up their omnichannel food retail operations.