John Westgarth, Agile Coach at Food Agility:
For the Food Agility Summit 2021, we invited a series of heavy hitters in Australia’s agtech technology and investment field. We did this because as a CRC we strongly believe that Australia’s research sector is a hidden superpower that can be world dominating when given the right platform for impact. That platform is technology, and the people building those technology driven companies are moving at pace.
That is why it is essential to build a community of researchers, technologists, entrepreneurs and investors. It is the entrepreneurs and company builders that are creating the new innovations our agrifood sector needs to tackle the known challenges of food scarcity and availability, fragile global supply chains and the incredibly thin margins our farmers face. It is the researchers that will equip these company builders with unique insights and knowledge that give them a global point of difference. And it is the investors and financiers that will provide our company builders with the capital and the networks to take calculated risks with new products, partnerships or entering new markets.
Hosted by Ros Harvey, CEO and Founder of The Yield - an Australian agtech that provides artificial intelligence farm management technology for crop growers - the Hunting for Unicorns panel set out to dive into the heart of what it takes for Australia’s rapidly maturing agtech sector to take its place on the world stage. Alongside founders Emma Watson (AgriDigital), Justin Webb (AgriWebb) and Tim Neale (Data Farming), and together with investors Phi Morle (Main Sequence Ventures), Matt Pryor (Tenacious Ventures) and Robert Williams (Artesian) - Ros explored the likelihood that we’ll see a billion dollar Australian agtech company in the next decade, the availability of local capital as companies grow and what Australia needs to do to capitalise on this opportunity?