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PITCH
Tapping into Indonesia’s US$24 billion crowdfunding pool, iGrow’s agribusiness platform aims to help poor farmers to transform underused arable land into sustainable profit-sharing organic micro-farms.
WHY?

Large but unprofitable sector

Over 40% of Indonesians have low-paid agricultural jobs.

National food insecurity

Indonesia has 16 million hectares of underutilized farmland but continues to import essentials like rice.

Funding gap, underdeveloped sector

Most of the arable land exist in remote areas where farmers lack access to capital.

MARKET

US$24 billion

Crowdfunding worth US$24 billion from Indonesia’s 60 million middle-class urbanites.

iGrow targets higher income consumers who wish to invest in the organic farming business through a reliable profit-sharing network of farmers, landowners and buyers.

PRODUCT
iGrow is an online marketplace connecting investors, farmers, landowners and crop buyers to generate sustainable income streams from local organic farming. Its cloud-based agricultural management software enables investors to track the progress of the crop cultivation, harvests and sales; with live updates and online payments via iGrow’s app and website.
iGrow is an online marketplace connecting investors, farmers, landowners and crop buyers to generate sustainable income streams from local organic farming. Its cloud-based agricultural management software enables investors to track the progress of the crop cultivation, harvests and sales; with live updates and online payments via iGrow’s app and website.
BUSINESS MODEL
Branded as a real-life “Farmville”, iGrow creates a scalable farming ecosystem by connecting its key players using internet and cloud technologies. A 40% profit-sharing plan is offered to investors, who may check on their crops in real time using agricultural management software. Administration and supervision fees are earned by iGrow.

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iGrow identifies crops, with stable demand prices and growing characteristics, to attract urban investors to raise capital for the seeds to be grown by the specialist crop farmers on plots of leased arable land available in its data bank. 

Potential investors can choose from various types of crops with different cycles and returns on investment. After the investors get their return on investment, they will continue to receive a 40% profit share, with the remaining 60% to be used for the continued farming maintenance of the crops and to pay for iGrow’s management fees during the life cycles of the plants.

In addition, iGrow’s cloud-based agricultural management system enables investors to enjoy a real-life “Farmville” experience. They can track the progress of their crops and harvests, similar to the virtual farming simulation social network game created by Zynga in 2009.

The crops are selected based on their high demand and stable market prices:

  • Olive
  • Durian
  • Peanut
  • Jambu Madu Deli (a type of guava)
  • Avocado
  • Breadfruit
  • Date Palm
  • Longan
  • Banana
  • Vetiver
  • Super Coconut 

With each crop investment, the investor will receive a certificate of ownership tree (COT), with detailed information about the tree including its location, number and manager. However, fast or even regular returns are not guaranteed due to the unpredictable nature of farming. 

iGrow is also a social enterprise which promotes environmental conservation to potential philanthropic investors who may donate their profit or trees to research centers, schools, hospitals or charities. More government aid is needed to help underemployed rural farmers to increase Indonesia’s food self-sufficiency for basic crops including rice, soya beans and corn.

TIMELINE

  • Launch
  • Growth
  • Recent Developments
  • Future Plans
  • 2014 - Launch; won cash prize from Tech in Asia’s Startup Arena.

    Read in detail:

    The launch

    Early, launched iGrow, a crowdfunding agribusiness platform in Indonesia. 

    • The iGrow app was developed by Badr Interactive, with CEO Andreas Senjaya and Chairman Muhaimin Iqbal, also as co-founders of iGrow.
    Fundings

    November, won Tech in Asia’s Startup Arena and received US$10,000.

  • 2015 - Seed funding from 500 Startups.

    Read in detail:

    Fundings

    December, received US$125,000 seed funding from 500 Startups.

    October, iGrow had 30 staff and 1,000 farmers with investors on waitlist due to lack of farmers signing up.

    • More rural farmers to be educated and learn to use iGrow’s online platform.
  • 2016 - Seed funding from East Ventures and 500 Startups; selected for Google Launchpad.

    Read in detail:

    Fundings

    June, raised seed funding from East Ventures and 500 Startups.

    November, selected for the third batch of Google Launchpad to receive equity-free funding and training.

  • Recent Developments

    According to iGrow, Indonesia has 11 million hectares of underutilized land with a potential food agro market size of US$130 billion. Current data indicate that iGrow has over 4,820 investors with over 2,000 farmers cultivating about 1,200 hectares of land in Indonesia.

    In fact, within the first 19 months of operations, iGrow’s gross market value has grown by 194% month-on-month in the last 3 months. Over 1,214 hectares have been farmed across Indonesia, with another 9,712 hectares in the pipeline.

     iGrow also stated that it was already profitable since its harvest of 16,000 tons of peanuts which brought 24% annual returns to its investors, 99% of which have become repeat investors.


  • Future Plans

    iGrow co-founder and CEO Andreas Senjaya said that the startup has already allocated US$1.4 million for planting in the Buleleng, Blitar, Garut, Jonggol, and Banten regions. The long- term goals are to boost the incomes of underemployed local farmers and to make Indonesia become more food self-sufficient in the near future.

    The agribusiness crowdfunding platform will eventually expand to include olive farming in Turkey and also possibly to farming in Japan over the next few years.

Updated: 11/2016
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