Singapore-based commodities intelligence startup Navigate Commodities said Friday it has bagged SGD$541,000 ($378,045) in a pre-Series A seed funding round joined by Stellar James Management Pte Ltd and Palmm Pte Ltd.

Navigate Commodities said in a statement the funds raised will specifically go towards improving the firm’s satellite data and imagery capabilities, hiring remote sensing engineers, geospatial analysts, and artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning scientists.

With a firm commitment of another SGD$100,000 ($69,879) to SGD$200,000 ($139,758) at end of the fourth quarter of 2022 from a Singapore-based trust, Navigate Commodities is also expanding its capabilities to monitor and provide real-time intelligence on relevant supply chains such as battery metals, renewables, agricultural, hydrogen and energy.

In line with this expansion, the startup has also recently just launched it real-time Recyclable Scrap Metal tracking software.

Founded in 2020, Navigate Commodities is the first commodities intelligence platform to fully digitalise monitoring of end-to-end supply chains.

Existing solutions are only able to provide information through monthly reports, and are extremely cost-prohibitive. On the flip side, Navigate Commodities provides access to real-time, and more accurate information by leveraging on proprietary algorithms and AI to analyse satellite imagery.

Despite being multi-trillion dollar industry, the global commodities market has unfortunately always been an exclusive club, where market information is usually only accessible to industry giants within a small circle of multinational, multibillion-dollar trading houses.

Being in the industry for years, commodities analysts Atilla and Gao Rui became disillusioned with the archaic industry practices and lagged intelligence, and decided to set out to disrupt it by setting up Navigate Commodities to make updated commodities intelligence available for all.

To top it off, Navigate Commodities are providing their services at only 10 percent of the usual market rate, levelling the playing field and significantly lowering the barriers of entry for smaller players.

“We’re incredibly grateful and proud to have found collaborative, supportive and understanding investors, who recognize the intricacies of opaque commodity supply chains and how they’re ripe for disruption,

“This injection of funds for the first tranche of our raise has already enabled us to scale and expand the coverage of our MVPs and commence our journey into the Satellite and Space sector,” Said Atilla Widnell, Managing Director, Navigate Commodities.

While the startup’s goal was to target similar-sized businesses, its client pool has grown to include industry giants such as SGX, UOB, Goldman Sachs, and BNP Paribas.

Even major mining companies who initially brushed off Navigate Commodities are starting to recognise their value, and have started to engage their services.

To top it off, the team was able to bootstrap and generate a revenue of SGD$400,000 ($279,516) just after their first financial year.

“The concept of digitalizing the monitoring of supply chains end-to-end in real time is incredibly disruptive as it addresses the current opacity, inefficiencies, and opportunities within black box industries,

“Navigate Commodities have already developed disruptive solutions which will continue to drive innovation for commodity sectors across the board,” said Guy Shirtliff, Chief Investment Officer from Stellar James Management Pte Ltd.

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