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Contxto – Marketplace InstaAgro closed a seed investment for US$600,000. Rolesis Holdings, a family office, led the round.
The startup’s target market are small farmers in Brazil who use the platform to buy supplies from manufacturers. InstaAgro’s value proposition is to offer users a more accessible and varied array of farming supplies, as opposed to their reliance on middlemen or faulty counterfeits.
It’s also worth mentioning that the startup arranges the delivery of the goods through a logistics company or mail, depending on the distance and type of product. This, of course, saves farmers valuable time who are often located in very out of reach areas.
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At the moment, InstaAgro operates in Minas Gerais, Goiás, and São Paulo, but it plans to launch in Rio Grande do Sul and Paraná.
InstaAgro, the marketplace for the little guy
Being a small farmer has its challenges that go beyond the actual process of sowing, watering, reaping, and selling crops. For them, just getting the necessary supplies can be tough.
They’ll often have to visit retailers whose resale prices already cut farmers’ slim profit margins. These establishments may also lack in product variety. Growers’ second option is to buy altered or counterfeit materials.
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But rather than forcing these farmers to pick their poison, InstaAgro offers a third alternative. Through its marketplace, growers can connect and buy directly from the manufacturers themselves.
At the moment it works with 16 companies. However, InstaAgro hopes to expand its portfolio of products. For which it will have to buddy up with other manufacturers in the future.
Agro-marketplaces’ place in the world
Latin America’s marketplaces for growers sure have been drawing attention (and investments). Argentine Agrofy raised US$23 million while AgriRed closed US$350,000 last year. There are other marketplace platforms in Brazil too like Grão Direto and, of course, InstaAgro.
These startups play a big role in helping farmers big and small obtain more favorable profit margins. And without a doubt, their services have been in great need with the coronavirus pandemic. Nonetheless, there are still some obstacles that must be overcome.
For example, according to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE), only 49.2 percent of households in rural areas use the internet. There are also other challenges like farmers’ perceived ease of use and openness to technology. These hindrances have eased with the progression of time and rise of more tech-savvy generations.
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