FarmLead raises funds to offer more services

The online grain marketing platform FarmLead, led by Brennan Turner, has raised US$6.5 million in venture capital financing.

The series A preferred stock investment pool was led by Monsanto Growth Ventures (MGU) with additional investments from Avrio Ventures, the MaRS Innovation Accelerator Fund and Serra Ventures.

The money will help FarmLead expand into the United States, including establishing a U.S. headquarters in Chicago.

FarmLead was founded in 2013 by chief executive officer Turner, originally from Foam Lake, Sask., and Alain Goubau, who is now the chief operating officer.

The company’s headquarters are in Ottawa.

FarmLead allows buyers to post their bids online or engage directly with farmers who have listed their grain for sale.

The company now serves more than 4,000 farms across North America and has seen year-over-year increases in tonnage traded of 200 to 300 percent.

Kiersten Stead of MGV and Aki Georgacacos of Avrio Ventures will join FarmLead’s board of directors.

Turner said the investment will allow users access to a larger market with more buyers and sellers.

“Our ability to increase deal flow for farmers, enabling them to negotiate better prices and other key trade terms online, allows farms to take ownership of their grain production and marketing lifecycle,” he said in a news release.

Posting grain offers on FarmLead is free, while buyers and sellers pay only when a deal is finalized.

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