Chile’s AgroUrbana to Expand Vertical Farming Operations After Successful USD 6 Million Round

AgroUrbana, a Chilean startup specializing in vertical farming, has successfully raised $6 million in a pre-Series B funding round. This round was led by ALB Inversiones, a family office managed by Anita and Loreto Briones, and included contributions from prominent investors such as Juan Andrés Camus, president of the Bolsa, Amarena, Maximiliano Ibáñez from Córpora, and previous investors. The funding was facilitated by ACU Abogados and Echeverría Ilharreborde.

AgroUrbana operates an advanced vertical farming facility in Quilicura. The company’s innovative agricultural system uses 99% less land and 95% less water than traditional farming methods. Their pesticide-free lettuce is grown year-round, monitored by proprietary software named “Carmelo,” which tracks 52 annual growth cycles. This urban farm reduces logistical costs by being close to its consumer base and operates on a standard workweek schedule.

The company was founded by Cristián Sjögren and Pablo Bunster, who both have backgrounds in the energy sector. Their collaboration began in 2009 and led to the exploration of vertical farming during a sabbatical in San Francisco in 2017. By 2018, AgroUrbana had pivoted entirely to this venture, raising $600,000 from personal connections to set up their first office in Las Condes.

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In 2019, AgroUrbana built its first 400 m² plant in Quilicura, starting with small-scale production. The significant leap came in 2021 when the company secured $4 million in Series A funding from Kayyak Ventures. This allowed AgroUrbana to expand from a pilot project to an industrial-scale operation, leading to the construction of their current 4,000 m² facility, which began harvesting in late 2022.

The recent $6 million raise aims to further increase production capacity. Since 2022, AgroUrbana has quadrupled its output and plans to multiply it fivefold by 2025. The company is currently at full capacity, supplying major chains such as Aramark, Tavelli, and Castaño, as well as restaurants like Bidasoa, Baco, Happening, and Pinpilinpausha. Their ultimate goal is to scale up production significantly, occupying the entire 4,000 m² facility and aiming for an output equivalent to 20 hectares of traditional farmland.

(image: AgroUrbana)


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