For farmers. By farmers. That’s how Cultivatd, the Cornwall Ontario-based indoor farm brokerage, describes its dedicated team of experts and the services they provide. Founded in 2020 by agtech industry veterans Eric Levesque and Eric Bergeron, this startup helps clients get into the vertical farming space by guiding them through the process of selecting the best technology for their needs, and recommending the best solution depending on budget, type of growing, location and knowledge.
With more 40 partnerships with some of the controlled environment agriculture (CEA) industry’s biggest technology providers, Cultivatd has over $250 million in active projects in its portfolio and expects that number to increase substantially this year. Indoor Ag-Con had a chance to check in with Eric Levesque to learn more about his company’s service offerings, growth plans and ag tech trends in this month’s Q&A.
As an Indoor Farm Broker, Cultivatd says it can help farmers by providing agtech solutions and farm planning at no cost. How does that work and what are the advantages?
Our service offering is quite simple; we help people understand which technology is best suited for what they are trying to do. Our team will work with clients and based on the type of plants to grow, the budget, the location etc, we will recommend different technologies as a solution. We have experience as growers, technology developers and have operated farms, so our team really gives clients a deep understanding of what is involved in growing food indoors. There is no cost because we earn a commission when a farm project comes together.
How does Cultivatd choose its partners?
We don’t have an exact process here, although we tend to work with companies that we know have a solid reputation, good people, have detailed financials models and typically we like to go and see the technology working somewhere so we can vet it for ourselves. We also spend a great deal of time and effort building relationships with the people at our technology partners. It is important for us to have real, in depth knowledge of the teams behind the products we represent.
Is there new tech on the horizon that has you particularly excited about the future of agtech?
There are several – but mainly – we are excited to see new technology that allows different products to be grown indoors such as mushrooms, potatoes, animal feed, and even insects etc. The amount of food we are going to need to grow in controlled environments is massive and it has to extend far beyond leafy greens and herbs.
At the end of 2021 Cultivatd announced it had raised more than $3 million in a series A round. Can you share more about how you’re using/will be using these funds?
This was mainly to help us grow a team, open two new offices (Hello Austin!) and to market ourselves in the industry. We are also aware that large farming projects can take months to get going, so we also have some operating capital to ensure we are able to grow for years to come.
We have to ask, what is the story behind the name/spelling of your company?
We were looking for a modern name that fit the industry and this option really stood out to us when we went through our branding exercise. We really wanted a .com domain name so had to be a bit creative on spelling.
To learn more about Cultivatd and its service offerings, visit the website or call 1.877.258.8283.