Daily Briefing: Sirius Venture leads $1.37m funding in Aerospring; InfoCorp rolls out Sentinel Chain

And around $40m awarded to 9 farms to increase local food production.

From DealStreetAsia:

Singapore-based food tech and logistics-focused venture capital firm Sirius Venture Capital has led a $1.37m (US$1m) investment in Aerospring Gardens Pte Ltd, an agri-garden tech startup that offers vertical aeroponics gardening systems, according to an announcement.

Aeroponics is a method of growing plants in an air or mist environment without the use of soil and pesticides to enable year-round harvesting at home.

Aerospring intends to use the fresh capital to expand its distribution network and develop a new warehouse and showroom facility in Singapore. It will also carry out research to expand its existing product lines, among others, to grow the company’s presence in the US, Europe, and Japan.

Sirius Venture’s investment in Aerospring comes as global food security is expected to cause a major challenge in 2050, when the global population reaches an estimated 9 billion, according to data from the World Health Organisation.

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From e27:

Fintech startup InfoCorp has launched Sentinel Chain, an international platform to accept the use of livestock as collateral via a consortium blockchain.

The platform allows investors from around the world to finance smallholder farmers via livestock-backed financing companies.

It addresses this issue by creating a digital system to quantify, identify and verify livestock ownership at the local market level, enabling unbanked farmers to finally unlock the value of their livestock assets.

This, in turn, paves the way for them to receive livestock insurance and collateralizable loans. Coupled with a pool of offshore investors, access to credit becomes cheaper and faster, providing these farmers with a comprehensive suite of financial services that empower them to partake in the global economy.

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From ChannelNewsAsia:

A total of $39.4m was awarded to nine companies under a scheme to strengthen Singapore's food security, according to the Singapore Food Agency (SFA).

Announced in April, the 30x30 Express grant supports efforts to boost the production of commonly consumed food items like eggs, vegetables and fish.

It is part of a goal to meet 30% of Singapore's nutritional needs with food produced locally by 2030, in order to adapt to the country's long-term challenges.

SFA said it received more than 40 proposals by the end of the open grant call at the end of May.

The proposals by the nine selected companies incorporated highly productive farming systems that can be constructed and implemented quickly to achieve high production levels, the agency said.

"The proposals also demonstrated good potential to successfully implement the projects based on the company’s track record, farming experience and project team," SFA added.

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