Disclosure: AFN’s parent company, AgFunder, is an investor in Tractor Junction.
India’s Tractor Junction, an online marketplace for tractors and other farm vehicles, has raised $5.7 million in funding.
- The seed round was co-led by Indian firms Info Edge Ventures — the VC arm of internet giant Info Edge, which was an early backer of food delivery app Zomato — and Omnivore.
- Existing investors Rockstart AgriFood Fund and AgFunder — the latter through its GROW Impact Fund — returned for this round. Tractor Junction graduated from the AgFunder-backed GROW Impact Accelerator in 2019.
- Also participating were a number of angel investors including Vikram Chopra and Mehul Agrawal, co-founders of used-car marketplace Cars24; Vellayan Subbiah and Arun Venkatachalam of Chennai-based conglomerate, the Murugappa Group; and veteran agribusiness exec Sanjiv Rangrass.
In a statement, Tractor Junction said it will use the funding to open several brick-and-mortar stores, adding a physical touchpoint for its users. It will also devote some of the capital to talent acquisition and enhancement of its financial services offerings.
Why it matters:
While all kinds of weird and wonderful agtech automation — from robots to AI — is coming to market around the world, the majority of the planet’s farmers continue to struggle with access to what many would consider basic mechanization: tractors and implements.
In India, the cost barrier for this equipment is exacerbated by a highly fragmented and opaque market for new and used farm vehicles, unfair pricing, and a lack of financing options, according to Tractor Junction co-founder and chief operating officer Animesh Agarwal.
There’s “a lack of trusted sources for smooth transactions,” he tells AFN.
“Dealers also struggle to reach their target customers [and set appropriate prices for] used vehicles,” he added. “These are some of the problems Tractor Junction is trying to solve.”
How it works:
Smallholders can visit the Noida-based startup’s marketplace to buy and sell tractors, harvesters, and implements – both pre-used and brand new. They can also avail of financing to pay for their purchases, as well as insurance.
“We provide accurate product and price information to the customer and also make it easy for the OEMs and dealers to connect with customers easily,” Agarwal says. “Of late we have also ventured into a full-stack transaction model for used tractors, where customers can buy or sell their used tractor to Tractor Junction with complete peace of mind.”
By the numbers:
Tractor Junction claims it has achieved:
- “Operational” profitability
- 7x growth in annual revenue over the past two years
- 30 million unique visitors to its marketplace in the past 12 months
- 1 million hours of original educational content shared across social media
What they say:
“The used tractor and farm equipment market is highly unorganized with a lack of established sales channels. As a result, farmers struggle with access to quality information and inventory for a relatively high value purchase,” said Kitty Agarwal, partner at Info Edge Ventures, in a statement.
“Tractor Junction is bringing convenience, transparency, and affordability to the farm equipment buying process, thus empowering farmers and creating a winning ecosystem for all stakeholders.”
Jinesh Shah, managing partner at Omnivore, added: “By clearing the haze of information asymmetry, Tractor Junction is empowering smallholder farmers with access to valuable data and affordable high-quality farm vehicles. [This] will have a far-reaching impact on farmer profitability.”