COVID has impacted everyone! For many startup founders, they have had to shift or pivot their business models. What may have been feasible prior to COVID no longer works for a New Normal Economy. So how has it impacted Arjun who currently has a greenhouse distribution operations, and is starting up his robotic greenhouse venture?
In Episode 4, Arjun shares how as result of the technology adoption for virtual meetings (used for remote work and learning during COVID) he has been able to reach out to global networks – even from the Northwest Territories (while visiting parents).
However COVID has also shifted his original plan of leveraging his greenhouse distribution operations to startup his automated greenhouse venture. His pivot now includes external partnerships and investment to help commercialize his technology. As well, Arjun plans to include a second application in his pivot – scaling his shipping container automation technology for use in larger controlled environment spaces such as warehouses or abandoned (vacant) buildings.
So does this include for empty office buildings in the heart of many cities and their skyscraper districts as an alternative use scenario? We will leave this call to the building developers and realtors who have opened up their speed dial rolodexes in hopes to reviving and repurposing their portfolios of post COVID real estate opportunities!
Stay tuned for Episode 5 to find out more about Arjun’s next steps – hiring talent, recruiting an advisory board, where he’s moving next (location), and how he balances it all!
The technology was initially designed only for leafy greens however we are looking at incorporating other crops such as strawberries and bell peppers.
We are looking at B2B and B2C for our automated greenhouses. Our Business segment would serve Aspiring Entrepreneurs, Farmers, Cafeterias, Restaurants, and Grocery Stores. We would also target consumers of local produce directly in a vending machine format.
There are many benefits to utilizing hydroponics in a controlled environment. The crops grow 33% faster, absorb 500% more nutrition utilize 95% less water and 38% less food waste. The output is predictable. Additionally these systems do not require pesticides.
Our system is designed for almost all external conditions as we can appropriately modify the external shell. The plants will be grown in a controlled environment.
So we are looking at cold climates in northern Canada to hot regions in the Middle East.
The automation system designed for smaller greenhouse projects can also be applied to larger projects.
The methodology of automation is designed to keep costs at a minimum.
About Arjun Kumar
Arjun was born in India and moved to Kenya in Africa when he was young. 5 years later in his high school days he moved to Canada. He considers himself lucky to have lived in 5 provinces across Canada. Environmental issues and supporting local food production have always been a passion of his. As for work life balance in keeping him focused, he also trains in kickboxing and jujitsu in his spare time. His other hobbies include cold water swimming, hiking and camping.
About VizVa Agrotech
Vizva AgroTech is developing an automation system for vertical hydroponic greenhouses. Automating the growing process for fresh produce from seed to harvest and packaging utilizing robotics, mechanical systems, AI & IOT.