Virginia Venture Partners, an equity investment arm of the Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation (VIPC), recently invested in Babylon Micro-Farms, an innovative startup based in Charlottesville, VA. This dynamic company offers a futuristic, IoT-enabled vertical farming platform, empowering anyone to cultivate fresh, sustainable produce with just the touch of a button.
The driving force behind this investment is a consumer trend gaining traction nationwide: an escalating demand for fresh, organic produce. However, the supply chains involved in delivering fresh, organic produce are often long and costly. As a result, many communities across the United States face a scarcity of affordable, fresh organic food. Babylon Micro-Farms addresses this challenge by providing small growers and businesses with scalable indoor farming modules.
“Babylon is steadfast in the belief that everyone deserves access to fresh and affordable food,” says Alexander Olesen, CEO and Co-Founder of Babylon. The VIPC’s continuous support and investment, he says, “are instrumental in our mission to make the world’s simplest micro farm accessible to everyone.”
Babylon offers over 45 varieties of leafy greens, herbs, micro-greens, and edible flowers, all grown under ideal conditions through its IoT platform. This platform controls food growth cycles remotely and offers remote management, a digital support library, and person-to-person assistance, providing a full-service solution. It even guides users through each process step, from planting to harvesting, through alerts and instructional videos. This makes the platform a game-changer for beginners in produce cultivation.
“We’ve observed extraordinary growth in Babylon Micro-Farms since our initial investment in 2019,” remarks Alex Euler, Senior Investment Director of Virginia Venture Partners at VIPC. “The team is passionately devoted to providing the best indoor farming experience with minimal environmental impact. We’re thrilled to contribute to their success and look forward to witnessing their continued impact on the produce industry.”
Babylon has previously received investments from Virginia Venture Partners in 2019 and 2021 and a grant from VIPC’s Commonwealth Commercialization Fund (CCF) in 2021. Furthermore, in 2022, the company was also aided by the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), Virginia Jobs Incentive Program (VJIP), and the Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (VALET) Program.
The recent VIPC investment in Babylon, Micro-Farms, leverages funds made available through the U.S. Treasury Department State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) Program. This investment underscores the growing momentum behind local, sustainable food production and sets the stage for Babylon’s nationwide expansion.
Image provided by Babylon Micro-Farms