Irish start-up Micron Agritech wins funding at Welsh competition

26 May 2021407 Views

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Micron Agritech was one of two winners of a Wales-based hack event, which saw 12 teams competing for £135,000 in funding.

Micron Agritech, an Irish agritech start-up that develops parasite testing kits for animals, has secured funding in a Welsh hackathon focused on the agritech sector.

Menai Science Park (M-SParc), which has links to Bangor University, ran the M-Sparc Agri Hack with 12 teams pitching AI solutions to agricultural challenges.

Micron Agritech was one of two winners to share in the £135,000 prize, which was provided by the Welsh government.

The other winner was Wales-based Dewin.Tech, an IoT company that develops long-range wireless sensors that can be mounted onto gates and farm buildings.

M-SPac’s managing director, Pryderi ap Rhisiart, said the range of solutions pitched at the hack event could truly transform agriculture for the better in the very near future.

“We’re proud to be able to play our part in bringing these innovators together for the benefit of Welsh agriculture and finding ways to support them to bring their solutions to life,” he said.

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Welsh economy minister Vaughan Gething added that it was good to see how initiatives such as the M-SParc Agri Hack can deliver innovation.

“It’s also positive to see how new links with Ireland are being created with the participation and success of Micron Agritech who will now have a presence in north Wales.”

Micron Agritech is a spin-out of TU Dublin that was founded in 2019 by Tara McElligott, Sean Smith, Jose Lopez Escobar and Daniel Izquierdo Hijazi.

The start-up aims to change animal health testing with its parasite testing kit, which delivers on-site testing and rapid results.

With the new funding, the company’s Micron Kit will be partially developed at M-SParc, providing research links with Bangor University.

Smith, Micron Agritech’s commercial director and co-founder, said the team is excited about the collaboration. “Our team in Dublin is growing rapidly and this is a welcome opportunity to expand by hiring someone in Wales who will add value to our core team,” he said.

In December 2020, the Dublin-based start-up raised €500,000 in seed funding from animal health company Bimeda, agritech venture capital fund The Yield Lab Europe and Enterprise Ireland.

Jenny Darmody is the deputy editor of Silicon Republic

editorial@siliconrepublic.com