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Bowery Raises $50M More For Indoor, Pesticide-Free Farms

Indoor farming startup Bowery announced today it has raised an additional $50M in an extension of its Series B round. This comes just nearly 11 months after it raised $90 million in a Series B round that we reported on at the time.

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In a written statement, Bowery said the add-on was the result “of significant momentum in the business.” Temasek led the extension and Henry Kravis, co-founder of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., also put money in the “B+ round.” The financing brings the New York-based company’s total raised to $172.5 million since its inception in 2015, according to Bowery.

The startup, which aims to grow “sustainably grown produce,” also announced today its new indoor farm in the Baltimore-DC area. The new farm is 3.5 times larger than Bowery’s last facility, according to the company. Its network of farms “essentially communicate using Bowery’s software.” according to the company, and benefits from the collective intelligence of 2+ years of data.”

How It Works

Bowery’s proprietary software system, BoweryOS, uses vision systems, automation technology, and machine learning to continuously monitor plants and all the variables that drive their growth.

“Because we control the entire process from seed to store, Bowery farms use zero pesticides, 95 percent less water, and are 100+ times more productive on the same footprint of land than traditional agriculture,” the company claims.

Co-founder and CEO Irving Fain said at the time of Bowery’s last raise that in general, the company is focused on creating “scalable solutions for an impending climate and food crisis.”

“And we deeply believe in the power of technology to make drastic, necessary improvements to the food system,” he added.

Since the last raise, Bowery says it has extended its computer vision system and increased automation.

Bowery’s produce is currently available at select Whole Foods, Amazon Fresh, Westside Market and other retailers.

The market for organic food is growing, and so is the number of startups working in the space. Last December, Paris-based Agricool, which has its own take on Agtech innovation, picked up a $28 million round. That company has developed a way to grow produce inside of its “cooltainers,” which are essentially large shipping containers.

Previously, Crunchbase News writer Joanna Glasner reported that funding for venture-backed U.S. agricultural companies spiked in the first half of 2017, with investors seeking to fund companies applying robotics, data, genetic engineering, and other technology to farming practices.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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