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The Ag Startup Engine Adds Peterson Genetics to Its Efforts

As the ninth member to join the Ag Startup Engine (ASE), Peterson Genetics brings education, mentoring, and financing resources to Iowa entrepreneurs and start-ups focused on agriculture technologies.
“Here at Peterson Genetics, we’re excited about seeing the seed of a new idea grow into a successful business,” says Mike Peterson, president of Peterson Genetics, Inc. “We’ve been providing soybean genetics to seed companies across the country for over 30 years, and hope that some of this knowledge can be put to use for the fledgling companies involved in the Ag Startup Engine.”

The ASE, which is located at the Iowa State University Research Park in Ames, Iowa, was formed to address two fundamental gaps that prevent ag start-ups and entrepreneurs from being more successful in Iowa: early seed stage investment and organized mentorship from successful Iowa and Midwestern entrepreneurs.
Launched two years ago, other ASE members include Veridian Credit Union, Hertz Farm Management, Iowa Farm Bureau’s Renew Rural Iowa, Next Level Ventures, Summit Agricultural Group, Ag Leader Technologies, Ag Ventures Alliance, and Peoples Company.
“Peterson Genetics reflects the heritage of seed industry entrepreneurs that have had such profound impact on the shape of modern agriculture,” comments Kevin Kimle, director of the Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative at Iowa State University. “We are very excited to have Peterson join the founding group of the Ag Startup Engine.”
The ASE works to provide agricultural entrepreneurs with a structured environment to help them move from a start-up concept to a seed-ready business. Working in partnership with ISU’s Startup Factory Accelerator, the program is implementing an infrastructure for mentoring, rapid prototyping, product development, financing, and customer acquisition. ISU’s Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative assisted in the creation and development of the ASE, which then advanced into a private sector entity governed by its members.
“Peterson not only brings his business expertise, but also his strong desire to foster entrepreneurship in agriculture,” says Joel Harris, codirector of the ASE. “If you want to succeed in starting an ag tech-focused venture, there is no better place to get started than the Iowa State University Research Park in Ames.”

You can learn by visiting the Ag Startup Engine at

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