A €20 million fund for research and agricultural innovation has been launched in Ireland by Finistere Ventures and the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF).
Called the Ireland AgTech Fund (IAF), it will invest in early-stage agriculture businesses that can generate significant economic impact in the Irish agriculture and food sectors.
As part of its commitment to fostering an agricultural technology hub in Ireland, California-based Finistere has announced plans to open its first European office in Dublin to accelerate its investment and market penetration in Ireland and in the EU.
ISIF head of food and agricultural investments Cathal Fitzgerald said: “We view agriculture and food technology as a significant, high-potential growth area for the Irish economy and have sought out a best-in-class ag-tech fund.
“Finistere has a global reputation in what is still a very specialised area of venture investing and its decision to locate its first EU office in Dublin is a significant vote of confidence in Ireland’s agri-food credentials.
“The IAF has strong potential to deliver a commercial return on our investment, stimulate the growth of the Irish ag-tech sector at large, and support the commercialisation of the state’s significant investment in this sector.”
Kieran Furlong, Finistere’s Ireland AgTech Fund partner, added: “We want Ireland to be the ag-tech island – a hub for European ag-tech. All the ingredients are here: a longstanding, export-oriented agri-food industry; world-leading research at Irish universities and institutions such as Teagasc; and, of course, the thriving IT, biopharma and medtech sectors. Ag-tech is essentially the combination of all of these, so we see great potential for start-ups here.”
In addition to the investment, ISIF will spend an additional €20 million in Finistere’s global AgTech fund. This aims to give Ireland exposure to Finistere’s extensive network of co-investors and agri-food industry partners.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2017