IRVINE, Calif., April 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — SWARM Engineering, Inc, the next generation of cognitive software for the food supply chain, announced today it has closed funding for a $2.7 million seed round.
SWARM Engineering is a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform specifically for the food supply chain, rapidly solving complex problems such as supply & demand forecasting, optimizing inbound and outbound logistics, or maximizing yield in controlled environment agriculture. SWARM is a ‘no-code’ solution, so end users do not need data science expertise, knowledge of machine learning, or a degree in math to use the software. Business users simply define their problem, and SWARM matches their definition with a curated library of algorithms (which can be added to by customers or 3rd parties) to rapidly deliver a solution via the cloud.
S2G Ventures, a Chicago-based investment firm focused on food and agriculture, led the seed round, which included participation from Serra Ventures via their new AgTech fund, Harvard Business School Alumni, Wells Street Capital, VTC Seed Fund, and Rinvest. Angel investor and former CEO of Bunge, Soren Schroder, also participated in the round. The capital will support continued technological innovation and team growth, to support an expanding list of customers, ranging from growers through to dedicated logistics firms.
SWARM are anticipating continued growth in ag-data, combined with an ongoing scarcity of data scientists, especially those with agricultural expertise. They aim to simplify the use of AI and advanced Machine Learning in the food supply chain, so that organizations can reap the rewards of the huge advances being made, at affordable price points, using existing team members’ skills and knowledge.
Anthony Howcroft, CEO and founder of SWARM Engineering said, “I’m excited to have the capital to continue SWARM’s exciting journey in solving real-world problems for food supply chain organizations, but I’m even more thrilled to be partnering with investors who are so knowledgeable and committed to this space.”
Sanjeev Krishnan, Chief Investment Officer and Managing Director of S2G Ventures explains, “COVID-19 exposed the fragility of our food system, in particular the food supply chain, resulting in impacts to farmers, producers, food businesses and ultimately consumers. We are excited to lead SWARM Engineering’s seed round and support them as they help food and agriculture companies solve these increasingly complex supply chain challenges in a scalable way.”
Serra Ventures Managing Partner, Steve Beck, said, “AgriFood businesses are faced with remarkable challenges from a rapidly changing landscape in both consumer expectations and new business demands. Those businesses that leverage the benefits of the most advanced AI for logistics will have an unfair advantage. SWARM’s no-code solution empowers companies to focus on what they do best – making great food products, while SWARM provide the best logistics solutions from today’s rapidly evolving machine learning capabilities – a win for all.”
“SWARM has developed a truly disruptive technology which harnesses AI & ML to drive massive efficiency gains across multiple verticals within the broader food supply chain. Part of what makes SWARM’s approach so revolutionary is that it democratizes AI & ML by making it both useful, and useable for its clients in the ‘real world’.” said James Ramey, Managing Member of the VTC Seed Fund.
Soren Schroeder, former CEO of Bunge a global agribusiness and food company says, “The Ag-Food supply chain is all about optimization and prediction. Often the biggest challenge is to define a problem very precisely. SWARM can help companies – large and small – define and solve very complex problems quickly, using the latest in data technology.”
The global pandemic has highlighted the critical importance of supply chains, and food has frequently made headlines – in many cases, for all the wrong reasons; who can forget seeing dramatic images of milk being poured away because of logistical challenges? “In the next few years, we have a tremendous opportunity to make a step change in efficiency and sustainability in food production and transportation,” says Howcroft, “We need to give the right tools to the people at the heart of the food supply chain to help them deliver this transformation.”
SWARM is a Software-as-a-Service platform that uses a next generation cognitive computing system designed to tackle issues in the food supply chain and logistics such as load planning, inbound sourcing, demand/supply planning, maximizing yield, and pricing optimization. The SWARM platform is structured around a multi-agent approach which can utilize a curated market of algorithms. SWARM provides an easy way for business users to define problems, and rapidly match this to a solution without any software coding, or knowledge of advanced AI, or machine learning.
About S2G Ventures
S2G Ventures is a multi-stage venture fund investing across the food, agriculture, oceans and seafood markets. The fund’s mission is to catalyze innovation to meet consumer demands for healthy and sustainable food systems. S2G has identified sectors across the food system that are ripe for change, and is building a multi-stage portfolio including seed, venture and growth stage investments. Core areas of interest for S2G are agriculture, oceans, ingredients, infrastructure and logistics, IT and hardware, food safety and technology, retail and restaurants, and consumer brands. For more information about S2G, visit s2gventures.com or connect with us on LinkedIn.
About Serra Ventures
Serra Ventures is a venture capital firm investing in early-stage technology companies in underserved geographies in the Midwest, West Coast and selected other regions. Sectors of focus include information technology, devices/instrumentation and agricultural technologies. The profile of an ideal startup is one that has just finished an accelerator program or has been through a round of seed funding to establish and prove a strong product-market fit.
Serra Ventures has offices in San Diego, Chicago and Champaign, Illinois. The managing partners are former successful entrepreneurs who seek to serve their portfolio companies with real-world insight, hard work and a valuable network. In addition to capital, Serra works alongside its entrepreneurs in all areas of growth from strategic planning and partnerships, through business development and capital formation. As portfolio companies scale, Serra co-invests with leading venture firms. For more information, visit www.serraventures.com.
About VTC Seed Fund
The Virginia Tech Carilion (VTC) Seed Fund is an early-stage venture capital fund investing in disruptive companies across multiple sectors. The Fund is primarily funded by Virginia Tech and Carilion Clinic and concentrates its investment activities on the Virginia Tech and Carilion Clinic ecosystems as well as the greater Roanoke & Blacksburg region.
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SOURCE SWARM Engineering