Change is pressing on the agricultural industry in a huge way right now. Land use is under increasing scrutiny, and land investors and financial institutions are in need of robust and reliable data to help them manage their exposure to climate risk and identify future land use opportunities. Without adaptation it is believed that Agribusinesses might lose up to $150 USD billion by 2030.
That’s where Nunatak comes in. Nunatak uses artificial intelligence and crop science to provide high spatial resolution climatic risk assessments for financial institutions and land investors.
Meeting the founder’s Seth Laurenson and Remy Lasseur. Nunatak is one of the start-ups taking part in our three-month Sprout 2022 Accelerator in the Cohort IX intake.
“During our research phase, we were surprised at how little information about climatic risk people currently have to underpin large investments. We were pleased to see a great deal of interest from land investors and financial institutions in our solution. We are currently working with some of them to develop a working prototype of the Nunatak technology”, said Seth.
Seth, a farm systems and biophysical scientist, brings with him years of scientific expertise and a deep understanding of New Zealand's primary sector. Working alongside him is Remy, a landscape scientist and an ‘absolute gun’ with spatial data and biophysical models.
“We’ve been in science for over 17 years, and one of the things we’ve noticed is that people need to understand how future climates will impact investments across their portfolios . We are developing technology to identify land-based risk and opportunities that can support sustainable horticultural investments at a global level”, said Remy.
The business venture is very much an extension of the duo's professional experience and passion and both agree that their value proposition for the business lies in their data driven approach and use algorithms to automate investment risk to anywhere else in the world.
“There are various ways to assess the climatic risk to land-based ventures and the productive potential of land, but essentially they take on a degree of opinion and are often not very precise. That’s where we are unique: we use large data sets to help guide these decisions to make them more precise and repeatable.”
The long-term vision for the business is to go global in a short period of time, they’re expecting in as little as 18-months.
“Our immediate goal is to get a sufficient level of funding that will enable us to really kick this off the ground.”
At the beginning of their journey, while they knew their idea was desirable, they had difficulties pinning down what the actual end product would be. During their time at Sprout accelerator they were able to fine tune what a successful product might look like. and have since received great market validation from talking to others in the industry and have quickly realised just how scaleable their idea was.
Seth and Remy are excited to have taken part in the Sprout Accelerator and are hoping to get a critical assessment of their idea to help them figure out their next steps.
“We’re at the start of our journey now and are preparing ourselves for the roads ahead.”
Find out more about Sprout Accelerator.