ApisProtect is an Irish agtech company that is aiming to help beekeepers manage colonies. According to VentureBeat, beekeepers in Northern Ireland saw a beehive decline of more than 50%. Colony collapse disorder is one of the biggest reasons why this is happening — which is when a majority of worker bees in a colony disappear and leave behind a queen.
ApisProtect’s sensors offer real-time hive monitoring so that beekeepers do not have to manually check on colonies. The sensors are retrofitted in beehives and it alerts beekeepers about certain events. Plus the sensors can be used to compare the productivity of other hives and previous seasons. And it also provides activity reports with insights about how to improve yields. Currently, ApisProtect monitors 6 million honey bees in 144 hives across North America and Europe.
Fiona Edwards Murphy, the cofounder and CEO of ApisProtect, found that technology could be used to trace the reasons for why colony collapse disorder could happen. And ApisProtect announced recently that it raised $1.8 million in a seed round of funding led by Finistere Ventures and Atlantic Bridge Capital. Radicle Growth, the Yield Lab, and Enterprise Ireland also participated in this round. Kieran Furlong of Finistere Ventures and Alison Crawford of Atlantic Bridge Capital are joining ApisProtect’s board of directors in conjunction with the funding.
This funding will be used to expand the company’s team in Ireland and to accelerate international expansion in North America, South America, and the United Kingdom. And the expansion is going to begin in Salinas, California where an office will be opened at the Western Growers Association’s WG Center for Innovation and Technology. Plus the funding will also be used to allow ApisProtect to deploy its technology in more climates.
“Our investment partners offer deep knowledge of the pollination services market, as well as the agriculture and IoT technology sectors,” said Murphy in a statement. “This investment will allow us to accelerate our expansion as we work to create an extensive global hive health database to power our machine learning insights. The aim is to help commercial pollinators and growers to optimize pollination.”