Growing regional agtech startups

Article image - Growing regional agtech startups AgFrontier businesses will be a feature of the upcoming Emerald AgTeCH19 and Mungindi AGTeCH20 events.

The Central Highlands Development Corporation (CHDC) and X-Lab will lead a ground-breaking new program to nurture the growth of agtech startups operating from inland Queensland and Northern New South Wales (NSW).

The AgFrontier Agtech Incubator will provide regionally-based startups the opportunity to work and grow in a dedicated program designed specifically for rural businesses and individuals who have a practical understanding of agriculture.

AgFrontier is one of only four successful incubator funding applicants from across Australia who will collectively receive more than $1.7 million from the Australian Government’s Incubator Support initiative.

The Local Buying Foundation and the Cotton Research Development Corporation have also committed early support for the Incubator.

CHDC Agribusiness Development Coordinator, Liz Alexander, said, “SwarmFarm Robotics is an innovative startup based from Gindie, Central Highlands, and an excellent example of the solutions-based, innovative approach that producers and industry members can bring to agtech development.

“We want to connect, support and unlock opportunities for other innovative agricultural startups, scale-ups and spin-offs, who also have the potential to go global, while still operating a regionally- based business.”

This initiative builds upon the success of the sold-out AgTeCH17 in the Queensland Central Highlands and AgTeCH18 events in Mungindi, NSW, which showcased a wealth of talent, passion and expertise in the regions, as well as the strong demand for new technologies.

Ten individuals and/or businesses will be chosen to participate in the 16-month program, which will include a tailored curriculum of regular workshops, virtual coaching, and businesses fostered by X-Lab’s startup network and tech ecosystem.

The cohort will access national and international investor and peer networks, with a featured showcase at the Emerald AgTeCH19 and Mungindi AgTeCH20 events, a Global Linkages mission to the United States, and the opportunity to pitch to relevant investors at the Incubator’s conclusion.

“We are thrilled that the Australian Government has recognised the importance and value of investing in regional Australia and its rapidly growing agtech industry,” Alexander said.