Philippine agritech startup Kita has closed its oversubscribed $3 million seed round with Gentree Fund and Altara Ventures as co-lead investors.

Kita said in a statement on Thursday that with the fundraising proceeds, the firm aims to digitize the agriculture supply chain through big data and artificial intelligence (AI).

Deploying newly raised capital into digitizing the supply chain the team noticed that while their company has grown very fast in one year on the demand side, by winning bids from business to business (B2B) clients, there is more they can do to help the farmers on the supply side to improve pricing and generate income.

“Much of the initial growth and success in Kita can be attributed to having a very good team in place and focus on cash flow and profitability,

“We chose Altara Ventures and Gentree Fund to co-lead our round to help us scale and grow in the next phase ahead,” said Marc Concio, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Kita.

According to the statement, agriculture is a major sector in Southeast Asia contributing 17 percent of the region’s gross domestic product (GDP).

Within Southeast Asia, it said the Philippines is an agricultural economy and a key contributor to regional agricultural supply chain market size and growth, accounting for $30 billion of trading volume, representing approximately 10 percent of Philippines GDP and employing more than 20 percent of the Philippine population.

In particular for fresh vegetables, it said the Philippines is the second biggest producer in Southeast Asia with more than 5 million tons produced annually, only behind Vietnam.

Kita, therefore, aims to elevate the livelihood of Filipino farmers collectively and sustainably with the use of modern supply chain tech and AI.

Currently, Kita supplies fruits and vegetables to business to business (B2B) customers across Metro Manila while helping farmers to increase their income.

Kita was launched early 2022 in a 20 square meter dining room with the founder himself sometimes driving his mother’s old pick-up truck to make the deliveries.

Fast forward to October 2023, Kita now has three warehouses and a fleet of cold chain enabled delivery trucks servicing some of the largest restaurant and hotel chains in the Philippines.

Kita has been able to achieve this by focusing on hyper-efficiency through the use of data, tight control on costs and prioritizing profitability.

“We are excited to be partnering with Kita in their journey to help farmers secure sustainable livelihoods through technology and digitalization,

“This will have a positive impact on the entire agricultural landscape in the Philippines. Kita has thus far demonstrated leadership and the ability to execute to all their commitments and beyond,” said Seow Kiat Wang, General Partner at Altara Ventures.

Altara Ventures is a venture capital firm focused on early stage tech investments.

The firm is led by general partners with extensive experience in founding, operating and investing in technology startups in Southeast Asia and globally.

The firm aspires to be the partner of choice, backing founders early on in their journeys by leveraging the firm’s global networks and experience in building to successful exits.

“The Philippines has an intricate agricultural supply chain, extending from the farmers to the consumers, which makes tackling problems in this space challenging,” said Gentree Fund Vice President Wirin Eiamphoklarp.

She believes Kita has figured out a playbook for establishing a more efficient agricultural supply chain by digitizing and unlocking market access for farmers.

“With this fundraise, we look forward to partnering with Kita to deliver impactful and positive changes to the ecosystem benefiting farmers and Filipinos,” she said.

Gentree is an early stage Southeast Asian-focused venture capital firm with the Philippines as its core market.

The firm has a mandate to invest in founders with a clear vision and support them by providing strong financial backing and practical advice.

It works closely with its portfolio founders to help drive their strategy for continued growth and allows them access to the business network of its anchor limited partner, a prominent Philippines business family.

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