September 30, 2019
INDIANAPOLIS – Agriculture technology startup The Bee Corp has received another National Science Foundation grant to help develop business aspects of its pollination measurement technology. The company says the $750,000 grant will allow it to scale development of its software tool, Verifili, which uses infrared images to measure the value of beehives used for pollination.
The SBIR Phase II grant comes about a year after the company was awarded a $225,000 Phase I grant.
The Bee Corp will specifically use the grant to hire more technical staff. “This award is a testament to all the hard work our team has put in over the past year and half,” said CEO Ellie Symes. “Pollination is an essential input for many crops in the US, and our customer traction has shown that measurement is a critical need.”
Verifili was used with California almond growers in February of this year. “We received strong positive feedback from our first-year customers on how we can add more value to the Verifli platform,” Symes said. Symes added, “this additional funding from NSF speaks to how important pollination is for food production.”
The company relocated from Bloomington to Indianapolis this summer after a change from in-hive sensors toward the software-focused business model that pairs its infrared cameras with the mobile phones of users.