Geosys had the privilege of participating in the virtual World Agri-Tech South America Summit in late July. While the pandemic prohibited a live gathering, it certainly didn’t limit the value of the content or connections made through the online platform.
Our own Matthieu Hyrien, vice president of business development and marketing, participated in the Agtech and Fintech: A Change in Perspective from Yield to Profits panel led by Amanda Donohue-Hansen, managing director at Cultivian Sandbox with panelists Tomás Lopes Teixeira (chief Investment officer, IDB Labs), Tomás Peña (managing director, The Yield Lab) and Maximiliano (Maxi) Landrein (co-founder and CEO, Agrofy).
During the panel, Amanda asked a terrific question regarding partnerships – specifically how we’ve leveraged them at Geosys through the years and what advice we’d give to startups in this space. It’s a topic we feel so strongly about that we wanted to expand on what Matthieu shared during the panel.
The Key to Great Partnerships
Obviously, you want to partner with quality companies you can trust. But you’ll find lots of great companies out there that meet that basic criteria. So, what should you be looking for?
First, make sure you are ready to partner with another company by being able to clearly explain the key strengths of your organization. What value do you deliver to customers that can enhance the offerings of another company? No single company can be the best at everything. Know how you best meet the needs of your customer and come into the partnership with laser focus on your strengths.
For Geosys, our greatest strength comes in our ability to provide superior remote sensing data processing and analytics for agriculture. This is where we know we provide value to customers across the supply chain and to complimentary companies.
Second, identify your gaps when it comes to what customers need. When you have a clear vision of your primary strengths, it should be easy to start identifying opportunities. We see some organizations – from startups to large corporations – identify these customer need gaps and then decide to invest in growing that capability in-house. If you want to invest through an acquisition and have the financing to do so, it can work in your favor. But growing a team from the ground up to fill a gap is where companies often fail. The process is long and cumbersome, and chances are there is already an organization out there doing it better than you. This is where partnerships bring the greatest value.
We often talk about the 1+1=3 equation when it comes to partnerships. Through the years, we have partnered with companies that not only filled a customer need gap but helped us exceed expectations. When your strengths complement each other, the sum is far more valuable than the parts.
Examples of Partnerships
In the panel discussion, Matthieu referenced two of our more recent partnerships. The first was with Skyline Partners (a partnership we’ve previously discussed in detail) who are experts in designing and supporting the deployment of index-based crop insurance products. We’re working with Skyline Partners to bring innovative risk management solutions to companies across the globe to better meet the needs of farmers through affordable, quality insurance coverage. If you’re interested in learning more about, be sure to check out our webinar from earlier this spring.
The other partnership referenced in the panel was Croptrak, a more recent partnership focused on the Food and Beverage industry. With Croptrak, we’re able to combine our high-quality crop monitoring capabilities with their capacity to digitalize the specific business workflows of each organization. Together we support agronomy, procurement (yield and quality) and traceability efforts which all support sustainability metrics continuous improvement. By standardizing field data and making it scalable on a global level, we’re able to help food and beverage companies’ better position themselves for the future.
For any World Agri-Tech South America Summit delegates who missed the panel, you can view it here. If you’re interested in joining us at the next summit, be sure to register for the virtual World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit taking place September 15-16, 2020. Dave Gebhardt, SVP of Data Analytics and managing director of Geosys, will be joining a panel discussion and Matthieu will be leading a virtual round table session, both on September 16.