NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Trace Genomics announced today that it has raised $13 million in a Series A funding round.
The round was led by Stage 1 Ventures and also included participation from Viking Global Investors AgFunder and other investors.
The San Francisco-based firm's technology uses high-throughput DNA sequencing, artificial intelligence, and a database of microbial species living in soil to identify and profile the soil microbiome. The company raised $4 million in a seed funding round in 2016. Trace noted that this round brings its total capital raised to date to more than $19 million.
According to Trace, its microbiome assay interprets soil health and disease risk indicators in soil samples, offering insights for growers as to how to more efficiently use nutrients, reduce costs for soil maintenance, reduce crop disease risk, and which seeds, rotations, or biological agents will work best for their particular soil.
"Trace Genomics has developed a highly scalable software and analytics platform to quantify soil productivity and offer actionable insights never before captured," Stage 1 Operating Partner Joseph Pianelli said in a statement.
In the next year, Trace said it plans to expand to the corn and soybean markets with its ability to process more than a thousand soil samples a week across several geographies and soil types.
"Measuring the soil biome is the critical first step in optimizing the natural functions present in our soils today, so we can be more precise and economical in choosing seed, nutrients, and other inputs," Trace Genomics President and Cofounder Poornima Parameswaran added.