Noida- and Mumbai-based weather forecasting services provider Skymet Weather Services Pvt Ltd has raised approximately $4.5 million (Rs 27.6 crore) in its Series B round of venture financing from dmg::information Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, a subsidiary of British media conglomerate Daily Mail and General Trust plc (DMGT), with participation from existing investor Omnivore Partners.
Skymet plans to use the funds to expand its weather monitoring network and introduce new instrumentation for tracking hail and frost. A portion of the funds will also be used in R&D to develop weather forecasting and crop area/yield forecasting, in addition to expanding the market for its services in India and abroad.
The firm will also re launch its website to target consumers across Asia and Africa. The revamped site will provide weather forecasts in seven languages, including Hindi and Marathi.
“Skymet helps companies, governments, farmers, and consumers to manage risk from weather and agriculture. We are very excited to have the support of DMGT as we scale up and bring our solutions to a wider audience,” said Jatin Singh, founder and CEO of Skymet.
Founded in 2003 by Singh, who holds a Master's degree in International Relations and Affairs from Boston University in the US, Skymet is a private weather monitoring service. The firm claims that it provides clients with accurate short-range, medium-range, and seasonal weather forecasts, along with agricultural risk solutions, including crop area/yield forecasts, remote sensing, and agricultural insurance product development. The services are available on the web as well as on Android platforms.
Skymet had earlier raised Rs 4.5 crore (around $700,000) in its Series A round of funding from Omnivore in August 2011.
“Climate variability is a growing threat worldwide and we believe that India will benefit hugely from the expansion of Skymet’s weather monitoring network and development of accurate agricultural statistics. We look forward to working with Jatin Singh and his impressive team,” said Stephen Stout, CEO, dmgi.
Headquartered in Stamford in the US, dmgi invests in B2B focused information businesses. The firm has invested in companies operating in the property, education, energy, commodity and structured finance sectors. dmgi has an international focus with operations through its businesses in the US, the UK, Australia and Continental Europe.
Omnivore invests in early-stage agriculture & food technology companies in India. Omnivore supports entrepreneurs who are developing solutions to improve farm productivity, increase agricultural sustainability, modernize agribusiness supply chains, and promote farm-sourced food products. Currently it manages a $50 million fund. The Godrej Group is the strategic investor in the fund. Its other portfolio companies include Khedut Agro, FrontalRain, Arohan Foods and Eruvaka, among others.