Farmland Investing Startup AcreTrader Raises $12 Million

By Jemima McEvoy Thursday, March 18, 2021

AcreTrader has raised $12 million in a Series A funding round. The Arkansas-based startup company is hoping to disrupt the agriculture industry by providing an innovative platform that allows people to invest in farmland without owning any. Though facing some competition, the company hopes that its user experience (UX) will give it a leg-up — and already has a strong huddle of investors on board with its vision.

Sun rising over a cornfield.

What Is AcreTrader?

The farmland investing startup was founded in 2018 by Carter Malloy, who, according to the business website, grew up in an Arkansas farming family and has a “lifelong passion for investing and agriculture.” Prior to starting this company, Malloy, now the CEO of AcreTrader, spent five years at a global equity investment firm and previously worked as a managing director with Stephens Inc., a large private investment bank. The rest of the team working at AcreTrader also brings decades of experience in financial services and agriculture critical for their mission of breaking into the more than $1 trillion industry (in the US alone).

The farmland investing startup operates through an online portal on which accredited investors can survey and invest in land. The business itself buys less than 1% of the total number of parcels considered, and places those farm parcels in a unique LLC to offer to investors. With an industry in flux, this startup hopes to address the issue of a lack of access for the average investor to what has typically been one of the US’s greatest real estate assets.

Money & Investors

The startup company has raised a total of $20.2 million to date, according to Crunchbase. The first business funding for AcreTrader was a $1.6 million debt financing round in January 2020. Also in January, the agriculture investing company raised another $1.6 million in equity crowdfunding before pulling $5 million in a seed round led by Arkansas-based RZC Investments in April of that year.

This most recent round — which brought in the most significant amount of money to date, $12 million — was led by Jump Capital, with participation from Narya Capital and Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund. Existing investors RZC Investments and Revel Partners also contributed more money to the business.

The Road Ahead for AcreTrader

The farmland investing company has the momentum of the new cash injection, as well as other signs of growth: AcreTrader has doubled its employee count, quadrupled its investor poll, and increased the total funds raised on the platform 12-fold over the past year. The startup told Crunchbase that it is now working with investors from 48 different states.

That being said, the farmland investing business will have to contend with some competition in the form of US-based companies Farm Together, Farmland Partners, and Gladstone Land Corporation.

Despite the competition, this business appears to be in a strong position to succeed, having raised over $20 million in just three years and cutting into a market that is not yet too crowded, but holds massive potential for growth.

About the Author

Headshot for author Jemima McEvoy

Jemima is a journalist who enjoys reporting on business, particularly small business and entrepreneurship.

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