iyris Secures $16M for Climate-Resilient Farming Tech

iyris, formerly known as RedSea, has successfully raised $16 million in a Series A funding round, marking a significant milestone for the AgriClimate Tech company. This round was spearheaded by the Ecosystem Integrity Fund (EIF), a San Francisco-based climate and sustainability fund, and saw participation from both existing and new institutional investors, including Global Ventures, Dubai Future District Fund (DFDF), Kanoo Ventures, Globivest, and Bonaventure Capital. This influx of capital is set to bolster iyris’ international sales pipeline for its SecondSky greenhouse covers and nets, as well as fund the continued development of its innovative heat-blocking products and resilient plant genetics.

The investment underscores iyris’ commitment to tackling some of the most pressing challenges in agriculture today. By providing growers with tools to increase crop yields, reduce input costs, and extend growing seasons in harsh climates, iyris is addressing key issues related to food security and sustainable farming. The company’s technologies, originally developed by leading scientists at the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia, have already demonstrated their efficacy in some of the world’s most challenging farming environments.

John Keppler, Executive Chairperson of iyris, highlighted the company’s mission to make it easier for farmers to grow fresh produce in increasingly difficult climates. “We are building a great company, making it easier for farmers to grow fresh produce in increasingly difficult climates,” Keppler said. “In just a very short time, we have brought our products to market and proven that they work. But we have a lot left to do and completion of our Series A fundraise enables us to take the next steps in expanding sales of our drop-in solutions for heat blocking and crop resilience to our grower customers around the world.”

Sasha Brown, partner at EIF, echoed these sentiments, emphasizing the importance of iyris’ solutions for growers operating in extreme weather conditions. “EIF has been studying the impact of increasingly extreme weather on agriculture. iyris’ suite of products are tailored for growers in harsh and volatile conditions, who have been underserved historically by AgriClimate Tech innovation,” Brown noted. “We have invested in iyris because we believe there are few companies that have such tremendous potential to become a critical partner for a mass market of growers, as they seek to adapt their operations to withstand and mitigate changing climate.”

The implications of this funding round for the agritech sector are profound. iyris’ technologies are not just incremental improvements; they represent transformative solutions that can significantly enhance the sustainability and productivity of agriculture in extreme climates. The company’s SecondSky technology, for instance, offers greenhouse coverings and shade nets that minimize the stress and impact of near-infrared heat radiation on plants while allowing the spectrum of light necessary for photosynthesis. This innovation is particularly valuable in regions where excessive heat limits sustainable agricultural growth.

Furthermore, iyris’ development of resilient plant genetics through a novel hybridization process promises to breed crops that can withstand salinity, heat, and drought. This could revolutionize food production in areas plagued by these environmental challenges, ensuring more dependable and resilient food supplies.

For investors, the successful Series A round signals a strong vote of confidence in iyris’ business model and technological capabilities. The company’s focus on sustainability aligns well with the growing trend of impact investing, where financial returns are coupled with positive environmental and social outcomes. The backing from prominent investors like EIF and others also suggests that iyris is well-positioned for future growth and market expansion.

In summary, iyris’ recent funding round is a significant development in the agritech landscape, offering promising solutions to some of the most urgent challenges in modern agriculture. With its innovative technologies and strong investor backing, iyris is poised to make a substantial impact on global food security and sustainable farming practices.

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