US-based Farmer’s Business Network (FBN) has closed a $250 million Series F round led by BlackRock-managed funds and accounts, the agtech platform said Monday.
New investors Baron Capital Group, Balyasny Asset Management, Mandi Ventures, Lupa Systems and Ron Shaich backed the latest round, FBN said in a press release.
Existing investors DBL Partners, Temasek, T. Rowe Price Associates-managed funds and accounts, GV, Expanding Capital and Kleiner Perkins also participated in the round, the statement said.
The investment values the company at about $1.75 billion, according to a Bloomberg report.
FBN said it planned to use the capital to expand its Farmers First FBN Direct range of direct-to-farm inputs, including seeds, crop protection and biologicals, which aim to reduce costs for farmers. The investment will also help the company expand its FBN Crop Marketing and Financial Services, which help farmers manage risk and obtain insurance and loans, it said.
“Our mission as a company is to improve the profitability of farming families around the world for generations to come. Many farmers and ranchers were already struggling before the disruption and financial challenges brought on by the pandemic,” said Amol Deshpande, FBN co-founder and CEO. “We will double down on putting farmers first by further investing in technologies that lower costs, improve transparency and create local community development opportunities in rural areas.”
Currently, FBN has more than 12,000 members who farm in the US and Canada. It launched its services in Australia last month by acquiring Australian agtech firm Farmsave.