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Mountain Cleantech backs agtech company Pessl Instruments

Mountain Cleantech's investment for a 30-40% equity stake will fund product development and international expansion.

Mountain Cleantech, a Zurich-based venture cleantech investor, has invested in Pessl Instruments, an Austrian precision agri developer.

While the deal size is undisclosed, Jürgen Habichler, managing director at Mountain Cleantech, told Agri Investor the firm had taken an equity stake of between 30 and 40 percent.

Pessl develops and distributes climate monitoring, agricultural risk and irrigation management technology solutions. Its products include weather stations, soil moisture monitoring devices, electronic insect trap and remote crop monitoring systems.

“The global precision agriculture industry is poised for significant growth, underpinned by… increasing crop production requirements, limited arable land and accelerating adoption, triggered primarily through the emergence of smart phones and tablet computers,” Habichler said.

Pessl will use the funding to cement its position in Africa and the Americas, expand beyond the 85 countries its products are used in, and extend its product range, the firm said in a statement. Habichler added that the company has two subsidiary offices – in Brazil and the US – and will grow these offices as well as look at opening in new countries.

Pessl Instruments is currently developing a number of additional products, such as animal behaviour-analysis tools and mobile onsite soil nutrient analysis devices, with the latter poised to enter the market shortly.

Last year was a record-breaking one for the agtech industry, with companies raising $2.36bn according to an AgFunder report. Precision agtech accounted for 30 percent of all deals.

Mountain Cleantech is investing out of its second fund which closed in late 2011 on €50 million.