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South African startup swiftVEE secures $1.5-million in funding

Agritech startup swiftVEE has secured $1.5-million in a Series A investment round. The funding will be used to expand the agritech’s offering within South Africa and neighbouring countries including Namibia and Botswana.

Through the new investment, swiftVEE will be included on Zire, South Africa’s first multi-industry agricultural services platform that will provide technology services to industry stakeholders in the livestock, fruit, and vegetable sector. Leveraging off Zire, which is expected to launch in 2021, swiftVEE will be able to extend its market share to new customers across multiple industries.

In an interview with Ventureburn, Russel Luck, chief executive officer, comments on the funding received and the conditions of Covid-19 in generating innovation in the agritech sector.

“The investment and growth of swiftVEE demonstrates a significant change in attitude within the agricultural sector. Traditional Agribusinesses appear to have recognised the importance of re-inventing themselves as COVID accelerates the rate at which agriculture moves towards the fourth industrial revolution. In the age of new-normal the door has been opened for technology start-ups to create a new narrative.”

Founded in 2016 and officially launching in 2017, swiftVEE is a livestock trading platform that connects online buyers to livestock auctions for real-time purchases in low-latency areas such as farmlands.

Luck provides insight into the mission of swiftVEE: “Our aim is to optimise trade between the buyers and sellers of livestock with the use of artificial intelligence technology and bring foreign livestock buyers to South African markets. By pursuing this aim, we solve bigger problems caused by a lack of trading efficiency within the livestock trading sector (problems such as resource scarcity / food insecurity / global hunger).”

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