This Agritech Startup Offers Agronomics Solutions
The startup, which initially started its operations in the Hindi heartland of Madhya Pradesh and has a presence in Rajasthan, is gradually trying to enter the southern states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Telangana
India is an agriculture-based country. Around 70 per cent of the entire population of the country is associated with agriculture and the sector contributes 17-20 per cent to the GDP and provides employment to 60 per cent of the population.
Despite the agriculture sector is a spinal cord for India, technology has found little space in the space to enhance productivity. Awareness on quality of soil, use of fertilizers, poor guidance and inferior quality products, among others, to date continues to deliver lower yield.
In order to tackle these pain points, an Indore-based agritech startup called Gramophone is offering agronomic solutions to the country's farmers.
What is Gramophone?
Launched in 2016 by four friends Tauseef Khan, Nishant Vats, Harshit Gupta and Ashish Ranjan Singh, Gramophone is a farming platform that delivers agronomic intelligence to thousands of farmers. The platform also delivers agri inputs such as seeds, crop protection and crop nutrition products.
Gramophone offers farmers tailored agri-advice on crops, soil, weather, etc, through Krishi Mitra app that serves as the point of access for farmers and also through their physical retail "hubs' that act as distribution and demand generation centres.
"We started as agronomy lead, agri-input commerce company and In the last two years, we have become a full-stack technology platform by making farm management stronger, adding Gram Vyapaar - an Output Marketplace. We strived to build a platform that makes farming scientific, data-driven and easy. We empower farming decision-makers with all kinds of knowledge, data and intelligence as a SAAS product," Tauseef Khan, co-founder of Gramophone added.
The startup which initially started its operations in the Hindi heartland of Madhya Pradesh and has a presence in Rajasthan is gradually trying to enter Southern states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telangana, among others. "We provide advice/consultancy to them on the complete life-cycle of their crops and deliver the required agriculture-related inputs to their doorsteps," he added. Khan claimed that Gramophone helps farmers to cut their cost of cultivation and increase overall profits. The startup has seen over 5 lakh farmers on-boarding in the last two years, taking total farmer onboard to over 8 lakhs. The startup claims to reduce agri-input cost at least by 10-15 per cent and increases farmers' yield by 30-40 per cent. The startup states that a farmer can witness a benefit of over 50 per cent, if he follows farming practices shared by the platform throughout the crop cycle.
"Our approach is to make agriculture sustainable which involves working on soil health and practicing Integrated Crop Management techniques. With the launch of Gram Vyapaar we intend to take this to new heights and make sure farmers get best value for their crops harvested," he said. The startup during the ongoing pandemic used social media platforms such as Facebook Live, YouTube live along with SMS services to stay in touch with farmers.
As per Khan, the startup works directly with farmers to understand their problems and build solutions accordingly.
"We have built a suite of technology solutions developed completely inhouse to make farming easy, backed up by data and science. Our suite of solutions includes Gram Salah, Gram Konnect, Farm Management, Gram Vyapaar and Gram Intel. Each of these tech solutions aims at solving the problems farmers face and we continue to work on the similar lines in future as well," he added.
Gramophone aims to have 1 million farmers on the platform by Q1 FY22 and reach 2.5 million farmers by the end of the year. The startup is also working on building a repository of soil types by partnering with research institutes to build a personalized nutrition recommendation to farmers.
Gramophone is also building a distributed supply chain to build its network by onboarding existing Input suppliers as our partners. "We also intend to partner with NBFCs and other lending institutions to facilitate credit to the farming ecosystem," he concluded.