BOULDER — Local startup GeoVisual Analytics begins the Thrive Accelerator Program in Salinas, Calif., this week with hopes that the experience will help the company break into the precision agriculture realm with some major industry players.
Boulder-based GeoVisual was one of 10 companies selected to participate in Thrive after 40 pitched at an event in December. The accelerator is run by Silicon Valley investment firm SVG Partners and Forbes magazine.
There is no guarantee of investment for participating companies, but there is no equity given up simply to take part either. The major value initially is that the accelerator aims to hook the startups up with food-industry giants like Dole and Chiquita to deploy and hone their technologies.
For GeoVisual, that sounded like a great fit.
Founded in 2010, the company specializes in analytics of satellite imagery and other big data sources to aid in monitoring and managing activities on the Earth’s surface like land-use change and conservation.
The company has been contracted by the likes of Microsoft to perform earthquake simulations in the cloud. In June, GeoVisual received a Phase 1 Small Business Innovation Research grant from NASA for big data analytics research and development. And chief marketing officer Carl Kalin said the company recently has contracted with Conservation International to help with forestry monitoring in Madagascar and Peru.
But the dive into precision agriculture, in which GeoVisual would help farmers understand what is going on in their fields and how their crops are faring, is an area in which the company feels its work can help farmers manage their resources related to crop production and distribution as unpredictable and extreme weather becomes more and more of an issue globally.
“It’s hard to break into it if you don’t have an access point,” Kalin said of the benefit of Thrive.
Thrive touts up to $5 million in investment for select startups at the end of the accelerator as they pitch to SVG’s investment community.
That, too, would be a big boost for GeoVisual. Kalin declined to give specific revenue figures but said GeoVisual revenue has been less than $1 million annually.