Intelligent Growth Solutions Ltd. (IGS), a Scotland, UK-based vertical farm technology business, announced today a £5.4 million Series A funding round led by S2G Ventures, a Chicago-based agri-foodtech investor.

IGS supplies plug-and-play vertical farming technology to indoor farms.

The £5.4 million investment will allow IGS to create jobs in software development, engineering, robotics and automation, and will increase product development, including continued innovation in artificial intelligence (AI), big data and the Internet of Things (IoT). IGS will also build global marketing, sales and customer support teams in three continents.

The Series A funding round was led by S2G, with AgFunder, San Francisco.

“Indoor agriculture production is at a tipping point. Grocery and foodservice firms have never been more interested in adopting this in their future supply chain. Cost and quality of product will be critical to scale this adoption. IGS’s revolutionary technology has proven itself to reduce power consumption, improve ventilation, and hence, reduce the capital and human costs to deliver fresh and differentiated products to consumers,” says Sanjeev Krishnan, managing director of S2G Ventures. “We are excited IGS will help enable this emerging movement.”

“We see IGS as the perfect foray for AgFunder into the indoor agriculture arena,” says Michael Dean, founding partner at AgFunder. “As a developer of highly sophisticated energy and control system technologies for third-party indoor farms, IGS satisfies our bias for investing in enabling technologies rather than technology-enabled production with the inherent risks associated with building and operating a large asset.”

“We are delighted to support the continued development of IGS, as it looks to take its technology to the global marketplace,” adds Kerry Sharp, director of the Scottish Investment Bank. “The company has been account managed by Scottish Enterprise since 2014, and has received both financial and non-financial assistance covering innovation and R&D as well as supply chain management and international market entry. The company has made significant progress over the last 12 months, and has assembled an impressive team with a clear focus on taking the IGS offering to an international market.” 

“We are thrilled to have the backing of the world’s leading agri-tech investors and the Scottish Investment Bank,” adds David Farquhar, chief executive officer of IGS. “We have recruited a world-class international management team, to be announced soon, to drive our plan forward with support from a board of senior international business people bringing industry expertise and best practice governance to the table. This industry is just at the starting line, and we look forward to working with our customers, partners and colleagues at the James Hutton Institute to enable the highest quality produce to be grown at economically viable prices and help feed the burgeoning global population.”

IGS’ R&D team has developed, patented and produced an IoT-enabled power and communications platform consisting of patented electrical, electronic and mechanical technologies, managed by a SaaS and data platform using AI to deliver economic and operational benefits to indoor growing environments across the globe. This technical solution enables the potential for reduction of energy usage by up to 50% and labor costs by up to 80% when compared with other indoor growing environments. It also can produce yields of 225% compared to growing under glass.