technology

Agri startup Onato raises $2.2 million led by Vertex Ventures


Mumbai: Onato, a B2B (business to business) platform for fresh produce, has raised $2.2 million in a seed financing round led by Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia & India with participation from Omnivore.

The Bengaluru-based company is building a technology platform for India’s more than $100 billion fruits and vegetable (F&V) industry. The company plans to use funds for talent acquisition and scaling up operations, it said in a release.

Founded in February 2021 by Vedant Katiyar and Ashish Jindal, Onato’s platform connects various stakeholders directly and uses data from the demand and supply side to bring transparency in volume and pricing, ensure timely payments, and help customers access new business opportunities. This in turn drives better margins and allows small and medium participants to expand their business over time without deepening their credit burden.

“More than 60% population of India is dependent on agriculture and yet tech penetration in the agri-supply chain is quite low. Decision making is mostly intuition driven which leads to a lot of volatility in prices and wastage,” said Katiyar. “I believe bringing in transparency in price discovery and fulfilment through technology will play a crucial role in streamlining the supply chains and decision making,” he added.

“By harnessing the power of on-ground data, we can create a revolutionary change in the existing agri value-chain which will result in better value distribution for all participants from farmer up to end-consumer,” said Ashish Jindal, cofounder, Onato.

“Most of India’s fresh supply moves through inefficient supply chains due to fragmented volumes, arbitrary pricing and complex credit management. Onato aims to solve for these critical bottlenecks,” said Kanika Mayar, executive director-Southeast Asia & India, Vertex Ventures.

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According to the company, despite its staggering size, the Indian F&V value chain is fraught with challenges. The ecosystem grapples with arbitrary price setting, unreliable payment schedules, and lack of access to real-time data between suppliers and the downstream market participants.

“Onato’s well-crafted digital intervention and robust fulfilment process are easing the burden of credit in the supply chain. The startup is also solving the issue of income instability in Indian agriculture that so often compels farmers to exit farming altogether,” said Jinesh Shah, managing partner, Omnivore.



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