Agricultural technology company CropLogic (ASX: CLI) has taken a step closer to seeing its hardware deployed by Australian farmers after unveiling lease finance options for farmers to purchase its award-winning hardware and software package, CropLogic realTime.
The lease financing will be provided by German company GRENKE which operates in 32 countries and currently has more than 1,500 employees.
As an aspiring agribusiness, CropLogic has developed the tool with the expertise of leading agronomists, leveraging over 30 years of research and has already achieved significant market traction in the US after launching its product in Washington and Idaho in 2017.
The company says it is currently servicing a significant portion of horticultural growers in this region, with a market share as high as 30% in some crops. Just recently, the technology was also selected to optimise yields at a trial hemp farm in Oregon.
According to Ms Sunny Summers, Cannabis Policy Coordinator & Special Projects at the Oregon Department of Agriculture, the introduction of last year’s Federal Farm Bill helped to boost the number of licenced growers from 13 to 584 and hemp acreage has swelled from almost zero to more than 11,000 acres in less than a year.
In parallel, the US hemp market has been projected to triple to over US$22 billion (A$31 billion) over the next four years.
Its concurrent expansion across the US and Australia indicates the company intends to grow its market footprint as an agribusiness and to service more acres at a lower cost in comparison to traditional farming models.
Raising agribusiness in Australia
As a product, CropLogic realTime is a hardware technology that monitors and tracks key crop metrics including soil moisture and irrigation and converts observations into real-time data consistently available to growers.
This information is then collated in a concise and accurate format, providing actionable insights for users to make cost-saving decisions.
The agronomy service provider said that by creating a purpose-built lease financing agreement with German leasing company GRENKE, it intends to provide Australian farmers with cost-effective tools to help optimise their farm yields.
Rolling out its technology via leasing rather than flat-out buying tends to be more cost-effective in the short term and alleviates capital expenditure pressures for farmers.
Leasing provides growers with an affordable way to finance their purchases of CropLogic’s realTime solution with German financier GRENKE bridging the financing burden.
Lease finance allows growers who purchase the CropLogic realTime hardware and software bundle flexibility to pay it off over a period of time.
According to the terms of the deal, the application process will be “user-friendly” with farmers expected to submit their applications via an online portal. CropLogic said that application processing will be completed “in minutes” and electronic document signing provided “on the spot”.
Once approved, the grower will have a direct lease finance relationship with GRENKE and will be able to proceed towards acquiring the hardware they need to commence operations.
Once up and running, realTime provides the farmer with readily accessible data via an application called GrowerView, which can be accessed via desktop, as well as on both Android and Apple iOS.
“We have been watching with interest CropLogic’s growth in Australia and around the world. GRENKE is excited about the market trends that would make a product like CropLogic realTime useful to horticulture growers and looks forward to assisting growers with their purchase of CropLogic realTime,” said Brendan Kelly, account director of GRENKE.