Cultivian leads $15m Series C for Advanced Animal Diagnostics

The venture capital firm led the round with local venture investor Kansas Bioscience Authority and was joined by a range of early stage technology investment firms.

Agriculture technology venture capital firm Cultivian Sandbox Ventures has led a $15 million round of Series C equity financing for Advanced Animal Diagnostics (AAD), a livestock health management agtech company.

The VC firm led the round alongside Kansas Bioscience Authority (KBA), a venture investor focusing on agribusiness, animal health, and human health. KBA was created by the Kansas Economic Growth Act of 2004 to accelerate growth in the bioscience sector.

Other new investors in the round were Middleland Capital, a private investment firm that focuses on the food and agriculture and consumer/enterprise sectors and Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings, a NYSE-listed laboratory testing company. Existing investors that returned for the Series C round were Intersouth Partners, a Southeast US venture capital firm investing across a range of sectors, and Novartis Venture Funds, the life sciences, biotech and medical investment firm. Some private individuals also took part in the round.

AAD will use the proceeds to accelerate the commercialisation of QScout MLD, a dairy cow test that can detect subclinical mastitis. It will also continue research on other testing technology. All AAD’s tests are conducted on the farm so farmers can obtain diagnoses rapidly.

“Large-scale trials on commercial dairies demonstrated that the technology significantly improves producers’ financial returns by preventing milk and reproductive losses, safeguarding animal health through earlier detection and promoting more judicious use of antibiotics,” reads the press release.

KBA was initially established to generate bioscience jobs, but is now a self-sustaining venture capital investor investing its own funds and co-investing with others.

AAD is the seventh investment from Cultivian Sandbox, a $90 million fund that was still fundraising earlier this year. It was unclear whether the fund had closed to new commitments when Agri Investor went to press. Cultivian Sandbox is the second food and agri-focused VC fund for Cultivian Ventures, the firm launched by Ron Meeusen and Andy Ziolkowski in the early 2008. The first has already exited some of its investments.