TeleSense, which uses IoT-enabled sensors to detect and predict crop spoilage, announced today that it has closed a $10.2 million Series B round of funding. The round was led by existing investor, Finistere Ventures with participation from Fulcrum Global Capital, UPL Ltd, Artesian and Mindset Ventures. This brings TeleSense’s total amount of funding to $17.5 million.
When we first wrote about TeleSense in 2018, it was focused on grain spoilage detection. Connected sensors placed in grain stores would monitor conditions like humidity and temperature to help farmers prevent spoilage.
But since then, the company acquired Dutch sensor company Webstech, and expanded TeleSense’s use case from just detection and more into prediction. TeleSense now combines it detection data with machine learning and AI to help maintain grain quality and optimize its path through the supply chain.
“Sensing temperature and humidity is nice, but that’s only part of the value,” Telesense CEO Naeem Zafar told my by phone earlier this month. “It’s beyond spoilage and more [about] operational efficiencies.”
To that end, TeleSense has also shifted its target customer. Initially, the company was going after farmers, but it has since shifted to focus more on large grain trading companies and co-ops. With its sensing and analysis technology, TeleSense can help predict how long to store grain and the optimal time to sell.
The company is also expanding into grain transportation. According to Zafar, dozens of grain barges catch fire because grains overheat. With its temperature monitoring, TeleSense sensors can help prevent this type of crop loss during transport.
In addition to prediction, Zafar said that TeleSense is also moving beyond grains and applying its technology to potatoes and other perishable commodities.
TeleSense is among a new crop of companies fighting food waste along the supply chain. Other players include companies like HWY Haul helps automate the trucking of produce, Silo aims to automate supply chain operations, and Strella Biotech, which uses IoT sensors on shipping palates to track produce freshness as it travels from farm to fork.
Headquartered in California, TeleSense also has offices in Australia and Europe.