• Greek startup Augmenta, which delivers deep tech solutions for agriculture, announced getting acquired for $110M by CNH Industrial, an agriculture equipment and services company.
• Augmenta’s acquisition marks important milestones for the local ecosystem in the deep tech and agtech verticals, as well as the largest exit in Greece in 2023 (among exits with disclosed sums – ed.note).
• The founders say they will be hiring aggressively over the following months for their Greek and US offices, in a bet to grow Augmenta into a leading real-time computer vision company.
What the acquisition means for the local tech ecosystem
Augmenta’s acquisition is an encouraging milestone for the Greek high-tech ecosystem, where interest in deep tech startups with a local presence has risen over the past years. Increasing investment opportunities available and openness to international markets have previously fuelled success stories including Ansys, Accusonus, Softomotive, Innoetics, Lenses, and Think Silicon.
It also marks an achievement for the local food and agriculture sector, which has been traditionally one of the major expert sectors for Greece, and an attractive tech vertical for investors. Last year, one of the most important investments in the local ecosystem was Better Origin’s Series A of 14.7 million euro.
Yet despite competitive advantages, the Greek market delivers lower agricultural productivity compared to other EU Member States. Agtech solutions such as Augmenta’s aim to help farmers increase efficiency in agricultural operations, obtain greater yields, and drive down costs, thus “making the most of every acre”.
To that end, the company has built solutions using edge computing, multispectral computer vision, and AI that can help farmers achieve an accurate perception of the farming environment and automate tasks, such as fertilizer application.
In 2021, Augmenta raised a $8M Series A round, which was joined by CNH Industrial as minority shareholder. Back then, the funding was aimed at R&D and expansion of the company’s distribution network.
“Our journey (literally to every continent’s remotest possible locations), has always been eventful, exciting, and rewarding. This new era of Augmenta makes us even more excited for the future because this acquisition is undeniable proof that deep tech can not only be created but also flourish and scale, in Greece,” the company founder and CEO, George Varvarelis, shares on social media.
By joining forces with CNH Industrial, Augmenta aims to amplify its impact, combining its agriculture perception technology with the former’s high-quality agricultural equipment and tech stack to serve farms of all sizes. Augmenta will retain its employees and strategically invest in its location in Athens, Greece as an innovation hub.
The team at Marathon Venture Capital, which has been the first and largest investor in the company, further shared their thoughts on the acquisition:
“Dimitri (Jim) Evangelopoulos and George Varvarelis, as well as Katerina Karakoula, Dimitris Akridas and Alexandros Nikolakakis are modern day heroes! They delivered breakthrough technology to turn tractors into robots, increasing farmers’ yield, while minimizing the use of chemicals at an unprecedented level. And now they will be getting such technology to the widest possible audience, maximizing their impact across the best parts of arable land worldwide! (…) For a couple of young farmers straight out of engineering school, starting from a Greek agricultural province, Augmenta is a true testament you can go a really long way,” says George Tziralis, Partner at Marathon Venture Capital.