- Gobi Partners invests in Malaysian AgriTech startup BoomGrow through its ESG-focused GDIV fund.
- BoomGrow’s innovative “Machine Farms” use 95% less land, water, and labor than traditional farming.
- The company aims to bring healthy, nutritious food to densely populated urban areas.
- BoomGrow has earned a spot on Forbes Asia’s prestigious “100 to Watch List.”
- The investment will help BoomGrow expand its operations across Southeast Asia.
Gobi Partners, an Asia-focused venture capital firm, has announced a strategic investment in BoomGrow, a Malaysian AgriTech startup. The investment is part of Gobi Partners’ commitment to Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG)-friendly investments made through the Khazanah Nasional Berhad-backed Gobi Dana Impak Ventures (GDIV) fund.
A Mission to Transform Agriculture
Founded in 2015 by a diverse trio—Murali Krishnamurthy, Dr. Jay Desan, and Shan Palani—BoomGrow aims to make healthy, nutritious food accessible in densely populated urban areas where traditional farming is limited. The startup has garnered international attention for its innovative approach to agriculture, which involves repurposing shipping containers into “Machine Farms.”
The Future of Farming: Machine Farms
These Machine Farms are modular, stackable, and can be located close to consumers or in remote areas. They use 95% less land, water, and labor than traditional farming methods. This is particularly crucial in regions with limited access to fresh, clean, and traceable produce. BoomGrow’s Farm OS, a remote management platform, integrates hardware and software, using machine vision and machine learning to optimize operations based on data.
A Wide Range of Produce
BoomGrow currently produces various leafy greens, microgreens, and herbs. The company has plans to expand into a broader range of produce like fruiting and vine crops. They mainly supply hotels, restaurants, and grocers and offer subscription packages for direct-to-home delivery.
Recognition and Future Plans
BoomGrow’s efforts have not gone unnoticed. The startup earned a spot on Forbes Asia’s prestigious “100 to Watch List,” making it one of just six Malaysian companies to achieve this recognition. With the latest funding round, BoomGrow aims to expand its operations across Southeast Asia.
Addressing Climate Change and Food Security
The investment comes when climate change poses significant challenges to agriculture. Khazanah’s Project Semai, a nationwide research project, identified climate change as one of Malaysia’s top three challenges smallholders face. Gobi Partners sees BoomGrow as a solution to the food security issues exacerbated by climate change, rising populations, and limited farming areas.
A Step Towards Sustainable Agriculture
BoomGrow’s approach aligns with Khazanah’s Future Malaysia Programme (FMP), aiming to deliver socioeconomic impact across various themes, including food and energy security and building climate resilience.
Image provided by Gobi Partners