US agricultural services and irrigation equipment company Valmont Industries Inc. (NYSE: VMI) today announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Israeli based ag-tech AI company Prospera Technologies for $300 million. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2021.
Prospera was founded in 2014 by CEO Daniel Koppel, Shimon Shpiz, and Raviv Itzhaky and since 2019 has been teaming with Valmont on digital and autonomous farming. The Tel Aviv-based company develops intelligent solutions to help farmers to grow crops more efficiently. The partnership has expanded Prospera's solutions, monitoring five million acres in 2020 against an original estimate of one million, with twice as many growers using the service as compared to 2019. Grower adoption is expected to double in 2021, with greater acceleration in the near-term.
According to Start Up Nation Central, Prospera has raised $22 million in two financing rounds from investors including Cisco, Qualcomm, Bessemer, and MoreVC, as well as private investors like Mobileye's Amnon Shashua.
Koppel said, "Our strategic partnership has demonstrated the unique combined value of Prospera’s capabilities and Valmont’s agricultural expertise and market leadership. This combination is the fastest way to scale impactful ag-tech solutions. We are excited about the future and the opportunity to continue to further our work to feed an expanding global population through our machine learning technologies that allow growers to make more informed, efficient and scientific decisions."
Valmont president and CEO Stephen Kaniewski said, "Today’s acquisition is a testament to our commitment to make the farm more efficient and increase productivity while dramatically improving sustainability. Building on the successful partnership with Prospera, we are accelerating our commitment to provide services that enhance the lives of our customers and the communities in which they operate, as well as finding new ways to achieve higher crop yields using less - land, water, chemicals, fertilizers, fuel and time.
He added, "Over the past two years we have delivered a widely-adopted, differentiated grower offering and significantly accelerated the deployment of AI technologies on irrigated acres, positioning us well for strong, highly-accretive growth of technology sales over the next several years. We are excited to welcome the Prospera team to Valmont and collaborate to commercialize technology for growers with unique in-season capabilities, while having a positive impact on our planet and enhancing long-term stakeholder value."
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on May 5, 2021
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