Morocco: UM6P, OCP Pledge $200m to Agrictech Start-ups.

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Morocco’s Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (UM6P) and the OCP Group have pledged $200 million to Bidra Innovative Ventures. The program will broaden Bidra’s investment horizon to cover developments in agriculture, mining, water, and energy. The pledge will support cutting-edge, international agric tech start-ups that combat climate change. UM6P is a center for learning, research, entrepreneurship, and innovation that strives to establish partnerships with universities all around the world. The OCP Group claims to be the “world’s largest” producer of phosphate fertilizers and offers solutions for plant nutrition.

 

The president of UM6P and board chair of Bidra, Hicham El Habti said, “This fund will expand our investment in reducing the carbon footprint of the agriculture industry while tackling the challenges of food security, urbanization, and industrialization”. He explained that supporting Bidra’s initiatives is a part of UM6P’s dedication to funding sustainable agriculture, educating the upcoming generation of business owners, and elevating Morocco and Africa to the forefront of technology.

 

Also speaking on the occasion, Amar Singh, Head of Group at Bidra Innovation Ventures, “UM6P recognizes the role innovation must play to sustainably solve global challenges. Having OCP’s support is a tremendous advantage because now we can extend OCP’s regional know-how and distribution capacity to startups that are ready to scale.”

 

The founder and CEO of Niqo Robotics, Jaisimha Rao said “With the support of Bidra, UM6P, and OCP Group, we continue to develop our robotic technology to benefit farmers in emerging markets that currently rely on outdated methods and manual labor”.

This most recent round was initiated a year after the same investors helped Bidra form a $50 million agriculture-focused fund. AgroSpheres, a startup creating the next wave of eco-friendly crop protection solutions, raised $22 million in a Series B fundraising round in October, with Bidra taking part.

 

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