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UPDATE: Ag Software Company Granular Acquired by DuPont
DuPont has penned a definitive agreement to acquire Granular, Inc., a software and analytics tools provider that helps farms improve efficiency, profitability, and sustainability. The San Francisco-based company also operates AcreValue.com, which is a digital marketplace for farmland real estate. This acquisition will enable DuPont to connect growers, analytics, and public and private data to advance its vision for a digitally connected, more sustainable agriculture industry.
“This acquisition is an important component of our commitment to leading and shaping the ag tech market,” says DuPont Executive Vice President James C. Collins, with responsibility for DuPont’s agriculture segment. “We believe DuPont’s agronomy expertise, deep customer relationships, and market reach will accelerate Granular’s business growth and help us deliver more value to growers around the world.”
“We started Granular to make a big impact on the business of farming,” says Sid Gorham, Granular’s cofounder and CEO. “I am confident that, as part of DuPont, we will make a bigger impact even faster. DuPont shares our vision for using technology to help farms improve their dollar yield, not just their bushel yield. We are excited to pursue that vision together.”
Going forward, Gorham will continue to lead Granular and will also lead digital agriculture for DuPont, which includes responsibility for DuPont’s agronomic software business, Encirca.
Adam Litle, Granular’s vice president of sales, says the company “will continue to provide the same services to customers that it always has – helping growers improve their efficiency, sustainability, as well as their profitability. By integrating with DuPont, these efforts will be enhanced and accelerated through the depth and breadth of DuPont’s deep-rooted industry experience and route-to-market.”
Founded in 2014, Granular serves nearly 2 million acres of commodity and specialty crops across the U.S., Canada, and Australia.
“Granular’s products – both AcreValue and Farm Management Software – have become indispensable tools for me as the leader of a farm business,” says Trey Hill, CEO of Harborview Farms, Rock Hall, Maryland. “We also rely on Encirca services to make critical agronomy decisions on the farm, so I am excited to see how this combination of leading products, teams, and technologies will shape the future of digital agriculture.”
“The combination of Granular’s farm management software, AcreValue land management tools, and the Encirca agronomic platform create the most comprehensive suite of software solutions in agriculture,” says Litle. “We can now offer growers the ability to manage all aspects of their farm – operations, financials, land, and agronomy – on a day-to-day basis. Ease of use and maximizing ROI for the grower are at the core of this.”
The acquisition also bolsters Granular’s technical capabilities in software development and data science, which will enable it to move faster toward a digitally connected, more sustainable agriculture industry.
“We are excited to welcome the Granular team to DuPont, and we look forward to working with them to bring a clear advantage to our grower customers,” Collins continues. “Granular is recognized as a clear market leader, as evidenced by its rapidly growing customer base and its existing partnerships with agriculture industry leaders, such as the recently announced integration of Granular into John Deere’s Operation Center. We look forward to building on this strong momentum.”
As DuPont continues the process of merging with Dow, Litle says digital agriculture will have a preeminent spot in seed and chemical agricultural inputs and grower-facing channels in the future agriculture division. “This acquisition signals the importance of the ag tech sector as a core value generator for our customers.”
What about your data?
So how does this acqusition affect a farmer's data already gathered by Granular?
He notes that the new Granular policy will have all the same protections as its current policy, like not selling grower’s identifiable data or sharing with third parties without the customers’ consent.
“In addition, the policy will state that Granular and DuPont will not, without customer consent, use either individual or aggregate data to inform seed or crop input pricing decisions. Granular also will not share financial data, either individual or aggregate, with DuPont, as this is the most sensitive of all the information our customers input into their farm management software,” says Litle. “Further, DuPont or Granular sales reps will not have access to any individual customer data unless the customer chooses to grant them access. We may use aggregated data to develop better products or services, creating more value for the customer.”
The deal is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to be finalized in the third quarter of 2017. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. Granular will continue to maintain its offices in San Francisco, California, and Champaign-Urbana, Illinois.