India’s leading aquaculture technology company, Aquaconnect, announced the launch of Aquaconnect HUBSs, a first of its kind direct to farmer initiative. The integrated HUBs will help accelerate the technology adoption with aqua farmers, improve last-mile connectivity, and source feed, health products, and farm equipment, according to the press release. The first HUBs have been launched in the coastal cities of Andhra Pradesh – Bapatla, Ongole, and Avanigadda.
Headquartered in Chennai, Aquaconnect was founded by Rajamanohar Somasundaram, Sanjai Kumar, and Shanmuga Sundara Raj in 2017. It is a full-stack aquaculture technology venture that works with shrimp and fish aquaculture farmers to improve their farm productivity and market linkage through AI and satellite remote sensing technology. Aquaconnect aims to promote sustainable aquafarming among the farming communities and work with 13,000+ farmers in India’s various states. Aquaconnect is funded by Hatch Fund, Norway, and India’s biggest Agritech venture capital, Omnivore.
25 HUBs in the next two years
The company plans to launch 25 HUBs in the next two years in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat and aims to engage more than 45000 farmers. Aquaconnect HUBS will also enable direct connection to banks for farmers to secure loans. The company has empaneled leading banks and facilitates aquaculture loans to the fish and shrimp farmers. The HUBs will provide farm advisory solutions and act as a diagnostic center for aquaculture.
10X growth during Covid-19
Aquaconnect witnessed 10x growth during the pandemic. Agri sector had a limited impact on Covid – 19, and it is the right time to improve the ecosystem for aqua farmers, according to the company. The company claims that the hubs will improve the support system for farmers and provide services on the ground. Moreover, it will, directly and indirectly, employ over 700 people via the HUBs.
Rajamanohar Somasundaram, chief executive officer and co-founder of Aquaconnect, said, “It is exciting to nurture a very underserved aqua-farmer market. A brick and mortar approach will bridge and accelerate technology adoption for aqua-farmers and encourage sustainable growth of the seafood industry.”
“The industry is exploding with opportunities, and we believe that Aquaconnect HUBS will holistically serve the farmers to better their produce quality, output, and eventually farm income.”
India’s government has prioritized the fisheries sector in its 2020 annual budget, setting the target for fisheries production at 20 million metric tons by 2022 to 2023. Aquaconnect works with more than 17,000 fish and shrimp farmers and helps them with its AI-powered farm advisory solution FarmMOJO which supports farmers to monitor and track farming activities such as a change in water quality, feed intake, shrimp growth, and disease occurrence precisely. The full-stack aquaculture technology venture improves farm productivity and sustainability through AI and satellite remote sensing technologies.