Agri-tech startup Clover raises debt funding from Alteria Capital

By Narinder Kapur

  • 05 May 2020
Credit: VCCircle

Clover Ventures Pvt. Ltd, which operates an agricultural-technology firm focussed on providing greenhouse-grown fresh produce, has raised Rs 7 crore (approximately $924,342 at current exchange rates) in debt funding from Alteria Capital.

The latest capital infusion comes after the agri-tech startup raised $5.5 million (Rs 39.14 crore) in its Series A funding round from venture capital firm Omnivore in February this year.

The round was led by venture capital firm Omnivore, with participation from existing investors Accel and Mayfield India.

Bengaluru-based Clover was set up in December 2017 by Avinash BR, a former executive at impact investment firm Aavishkaar Venture Management Services Ltd. The company says it partners with farmers and sells products through both business-to-business and business-to-consumer channels.

“The recently closed Series A round alongside Alteria's current investment will help us achieve our vision to reshape the supply chain for greenhouse-grown fresh produce,” Avinash said in a company statement.

Separately, Alteria Capital managing partner Vinod Murali said the venture debt firm was confident of its commitment to Clover because of the potential of the larger agri-tech segment.

Clover’s other co-founders include Gururaj Rao, Arvind Murali and Santhosh Narasipura. At the time of its initial Series A fundraise, the company said it would use the capital to grow its managed farm network and enter new cities and diversify its B2B and B2C offerings.

It is among several startups in the larger agri-tech segment to pull in funding from strategic players and investors. Players in the space seek to address gaps in India’s existing agricultural processes and provide fair economic incentives to farmers and other members of the ecosystem.

Last month, the Green Agrevolution Pvt. Ltd-operated DeHaat raised $12 million (around Rs 90.75 crore) in its Series A round. The round was led by Sequoia India, with participation from Dutch development bank FMO and AgFunder. Omnivore also participated in that round.

In January, agriculture enterprise resource planning platform FarmERP raised Series A funding from software company TechnoGen IT Services India Pvt. Ltd.

In December last year, Sathguru Catalyst Advisors, the asset management arm of Innovation in Food and Agriculture Fund, said it would invest up to $6 million in Nu Genes Pvt. Ltd, a seed company focused on nutrition crops.

Alteria Capital

The venture debt firm was founded by Murali and Ajay Hattangadi in 2017. The two were former executives at InnoVen Capital. Its fund has a corpus of Rs 962 crore, with backing from institutional investors and family offices and founders.

Ticket sizes for cheques issued by Alteria usually range from Rs 2- 100 crore. In February, the firm invested $11 million (around Rs 78.8 crore) in diversified hyperlocal delivery services platform Dunzo Digital Pvt. Ltd. It had earlier provided Rs 7 crore to Dunzo in November 2018.

Apart from Dunzo and Clover, some of the firms in Alteria Capital’s portfolio include financial technology firm Lendingkart, used car platform Spinny, education-technology startup Toppr and health-technology firm Portea.

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