Inaugural Thrive Europe Challenge announced

SVG Ventures | Thrive looking for agri-food tech start-ups that solve critical challenges
Diary herd at UCD Lyons Farm (Source: UCD).

23 March 2021

SVG Ventures | Thrive is looking for agri-food tech start-ups that are solving critical challenges faced by the global agriculture industry.

The inaugural Thrive Europe Challenge, is for early-stage European agtech and food tech start-ups and is part of Thrive’s Global Initiative. The initiative launched with the USDA in 2020 aims to recognise and promote early-stage start-up innovators that positively impact different regions of the world.

The European Challenge programme will be the fourth in the series and follows regional challenges held in Australia, Canada and Africa. Similar programs for Asia and Latin America are planned for later in the year.

The Thrive team will support hundreds of Irish and European founders over the coming months in advance of the finals on 7 October. The winner will receive the Thrive Europe Challenge Award and advance to the finals of the award winning Global Thrive Accelerator program with the opportunity to be selected for the Thrive VIII cohort in Silicon Valley, investment, and opportunity to pitch at the Forbes | Thrive Demo Day.

Closely aligned to the goals of the European Green Deal, the European Challenge is specifically associated with the Farm to Fork strategy which aims to accelerate the transition to a sustainable food system. The EU has earmarked €10 billion alone to aid this transition under the Green Deal.

“The Farm to Fork Strategy will be central to achieving the UN SDG’s and carbon neutrality and aligns with the key goals of our Global Initiative,” said John Hartnett, CEO and Founder, SVG Ventures | Thrive. “We want to highlight the best start-ups across the region who are disrupting agri-food while leaving a positive impact on the environment and society.”




SVG Ventures | Thrive also announced AgTechUCD, University College Dublin’s AgTech Innovation Centre, as a program partner to help drive awareness among the Irish and European ag-tech community. Many ag-tech start-ups require access to lab space, testing facilities, co-working and other resources for product development which AgTechUCD can provide from both NovaUCD and UCD Lyons Farm.

“We are delighted to be partnering with SVG Ventures | Thrive, through AgTechUCD, on this exciting new Europe Challenge Programme,” said Prof Orla Feely, vice-president for research, innovation and impact, UCD. “AgTechUCD is focused on building, connecting and supporting a broad agriculture innovation ecosystem, and this Challenge programme is a great opportunity for Irish and European start-ups to accelerate their growth and development.”

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