California-based Monarch Tractor has secured $20 million funding for its electric, driver-optional tractors.
The agriculture tech manufacturer is accelerating the global deployment of its technology to meet the growing demand for sustainable farming operations.
Their Series A funding round was led by Musashi Seimitsu Industry Co., Ltd., CNH Industrial, and VST Tillers Tractors Ltd.
Musashi Seimitsu is a Japan-based global auto parts company, CNH Industrial is a global leader in agricultural and other on- and off-road industrial equipment, while VST Tillers is an Indian tractor company.
Series A also included sustainability-focused private capital group MUUS and Silicon Valley venture capital fund At One Ventures.
Monarch Tractor CEO Praveen Penmetsa said they are excited to have investors who are committed to supporting sustainable agricultural development and seek to make a positive global impact on farm economics.
Demand For Intelligent Machines
There are several companies developing autonomous tractors but Monarch has been proving its value. CEO Praveen Penmetsa said the company has seen an incredible growing demand for their tractors.
He said that the food ecosystem is ready for transformation as the farmers are eager for sustainable tools that can help them increase efficiency and farm profitability.
Penmetsa added that the strategic investments by global tech leaders like CNH Industrial endorse their platform’s broad application across the world and beyond farm products.
Smart Monarch Tractor
Monarch tractors use state-of-the-art autonomy hardware and software to operate autonomously or with a driver. This smart machine can perform pre-programmed tasks on its own. It also allows a farm worker or operator to use interactive automation features like Gesture and Shadow modes to perform different jobs.
According to the company, the tractors can collect and analyze more than 240GB of crop data in a single day while operating in the field. These intelligent machines can work with a farmer’s current implements and have the capability to integrate with the next generation of smart tools.
Data received through sensors and imaging feeds are processed to provide critical data points that help in real-time implement adjustments and provides information on current growth stages and other crop health metrics.
With machine learning, the system is able to process this data to provide long-term analysis of field health. All the data is securely stored in a Monarch cloud and the longer it runs the more accurate it gets.
The Fremont-based company sells its tractors direct to consumers as well as through channel partners. The list of its existing customers includes Artesa Vineyards & Winery, Hopville Farms, Lola Vineyards & Winery, Matthiasson Wines, Scheid Family Wines, and Wente Vineyards.
CNH Industrial CEO Scott Wine said that Monarch is a pioneer in tractor technology and its system incorporates electrification, automation, and data management – the three key pillars supporting productivity, sustainability, and profitability.
Soon you may see these autonomous tractors farming on their own next time you drive through the countryside.