DeHaat: Empowering Farmers through Agricultural Innovation

Agriculture is the prime pulse of the Indian economy. The sector accounts for around 19% of the GDP and two-thirds of the Indian population depends on it. It plays a crucial role in the socio-economic development of the country.

DeHaat, founded in 2012, is a business-to-farmer (B2F) business. It is providing end-to-end solutions and services to farmers by using AI-enabled technologies. It aims to enhance supply chain efficiency and production in agriculture that can help them improve their crop yields and incomes. The company was founded by Shashank Kumar and Manish Kumar, who both grew up in farming families in Bihar, India.

The Company has a presence in 12 Indian states, DeHaat operates through a network of over 11,000 DeHaat Centers and 503 Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs), catering to over 1.8 million farmers.

The fiscal year 2022-23 witnessed an impressive growth of 54.2% in DeHaat gross revenue, reaching Rs 1,965 crore from Rs 1,274 crore in the previous year. DeHaat has raised a total funding of $222M over 10 rounds. Its first funding round was on Jun 01, 2014. Its latest funding round was a Series E round on Sep 23, 2022 for $60M, elevating DeHaat valuation to $730 million.

DeHaat operates on a diversified revenue model, with its primary income sources being the sale of farm produce to institutions and direct sales of agricultural inputs to farmers. Additionally, it earns revenue through commissions on platform sales, fees for value-added services like soil testing, and implementing government agricultural schemes. The company also monetizes agricultural data, partners with financial institutions for credit and insurance products, ensuring both steady income and comprehensive support for farmers. This multifaceted approach enables DeHaat to sustain its business while contributing significantly to the agricultural sector’s growth and efficiency.

Farmers in the rural areas are often skeptical of change and are hesitant to adopt new technologies for cultivation and other farm related activities. The team from DeHaat worked for the initial two years of its founding just to understand how farmers worked in Bihar. The first step taken was to market the agri-output of some of the farmers and get them a better price. The primary challenge lay in the pre-sowing phase, where farmers had to make crucial decisions regarding crop selection, duration, seed quality, and fertilizer usage. The DeHaat integrated method merges technology, data analysis, and advisory services to equip farmers with the necessary information and resources for making well-informed decisions during this critical period. This approach ultimately enhances agricultural productivity and improves livelihoods.

DeHaat, the agritech pioneer, faces off with AgroNet, Vegrow and WayCool in a digital tussle for rural dominance, sowing seeds of innovation. Looking ahead, DeHaat sets its sights on achieving EBITDA positivity by 2025. As we witness the evolution of agriculture through newer technologies, DeHaat remains committed to tackling essential challenges and shaping the future of farming.

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Ecosystem Ventures This Week

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