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Scoop: Robotic beehive startup seeks up to $100M in Series D

A robot AI-powered beehive called the BeeHome from startup Beewise

A robotic AI-powered beehive from startup Beewise.

Beewise, a startup that uses robots and AI to manage bee colonies, is in the process of raising a Series D round of between $50 million and $100 million, the company tells Axios.

Driving the news: CEO Saar Safra says the company will grow its revenue by 100% next year, with a goal to be profitable by the beginning of 2025.

  • Safra says the company has much more demand for its product than current supply available, and the funding will help it manufacture more of its robotic hives to meet demand.

Catch up quick: Beewise, founded in 2018, has about 1,000 of its boxes in operation throughout the U.S., helping bee keepers deploy bees to pollinate crops for farmers.

  • Its bee box, called the BeeHome, uses AI and robotics to reduce bee mortality. The company says it can slash bee colony collapse from 45% to just 8%.
  • The increase in honey bee colony collapse is a massive global problem that's being exacerbated by climate change, the use of pesticides, and habitat loss.
  • More living bees mean more crop yields, like almond and cucumbers.

Zoom in: Beewise is headquartered in San Ramon, California, but has R&D operations in Israel.

  • Investors in previous rounds include Insight Partners, Sanad Abu Dhabi, Corner Ventures, and Israeli investors Fortissimo Capital, lool ventures, Atooro Fund, and Meitav Dash Investments.

Of note: Safra used an interesting metric to talk about Beewise's revenue: the company saves 12 bees for every dollar of revenue it generates.

Zoom out: It's a hard time for startups to be raising growth funding, but for companies with a path to profitability growth, investors are still willing to invest.

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