WorkupAgri, the 6-month accelerator program that aims to provide expansive and impactful solutions in agricultural technology kicked off on 5 October. The program, which will provide a partnership opportunity with İş Bankası and their network, exposure, and access to business opportunities, announced the selected startups who are embarking on the journey to change the face of agriculture both in Turkey and abroad. The contributors of the event were Türkiye İş Bankası Deputy Chief Officer Şahismail Şimşek, Maxis Venture Capital Portfolio Coordinator Selami Düz, and Hackquarters Founder and CEO, Kaan Akın.
Kaan Akın kicked off the program with a welcoming speech where he talked about the aim of the program and the important numbers surrounding it. He talked about how the WorkupAgri Program received a total of 130 startup applications, from various verticals under AgriTech. With 9 startups in the pipeline, 6 were selected to participate in the program. Akın also mentioned the PoC and partnership opportunities the program can provide and touched on the phases that the startups will experience throughout the program.
Akın invited Türkiye İş Bankası’s Deputy Chief Officer Şahismail Şimşek to take the stage. Şimşek started his speech by expressing his excitement for the program to begin and by welcoming the selected startups. He stated, “As Türkiye İş Bankası, we will do everything in our power to make sure this program is productive and fruitful for our startups.” and added, “We are designing WorkupAgri as an academy that will work together with all of our partners to make a change in agriculture.”
The kick-off went on with the pitches of the selected startups;
3pmetrics: 3pmetrics is a software infrastructure that enables institutions, businesses, activities, or agricultural activities to calculate, report and analyze the carbon footprints of ISO 14064 standards.
BeePull: BeePull is a hardware product that enables royal jelly to be produced without the need for a beekeeper by utilizing machine learning and protects bee health.
Local Greens: LocalGreens is an initiative focused on sustainability that grows fresh & healthy vegetables by using the hydroponic growing method, in local farms of metropolitan cities.
SOYL-GEL: Soyl-Gel is a multifunctional hydrogel for agriculture, that supplies water for prolonged times, releases nutrients and pesticides for soil and plant health. From natural nanotubes in its composite structure, it releases necessary fertilizers and pesticides with water.
Wastepresso: Wastespresso is an enterprise that produces disposable plastics, materials, and raw materials that can dissolve quickly in nature by collecting, composting, and drying coffee wastes.
wiCow: wiCow is an artificial intelligence-supported early warning and health monitoring system used in cattle breeding.
The kick-off concluded with a chat with Selami Düz, Maxis Venture Capital Portfolio Coordinator moderated by Kaan Akın. The conversation started with how Maxis itself was a startup itself and how it evolved into one of the most impactful venture capitalists in Turkey. Düz continued by explaining how Maxis helps startups other than providing funding, like using the product of the startup either through Türkiye İş Bankası or other group companies. The session was concluded by mentioning what Maxis looks for when investing in a startup. The list included the idea, the team, the applicability of the business model, working patiently and methodologically along with a little bit of luck.
For more information on the program, visit our website https://www.workupagri.ist/