Agriculture often stands at the fringes of the discussions of economic progress, frequently associated with rural and pastoral traditions that are at odds with grandiose metropolis visions of industrialization.
Yet StarAgri visionary Co-founder and CEO, Amith Agarwal, saw a fertile opportunity in the paradox. He saw beyond the façade of semantic contradictions and envisioned a profound need for systematic collaboration – inherently creating a novel business model that is equally focused on people, performance and purpose.
“Agriculture is the bedrock of economic growth,” states Mr. Agarwal. “Yet it is often overlooked as a driver of growth amidst narratives of urbanization and technological advancement, especially in India.”
Founded in 2006, StarAgri is a comprehensive one-stop solution to the age-old problem of the disconnect between farmers, suppliers and several parts of the supply chain.
It focuses on four core business activities pertaining to Agrofinance, Procurement, Supply Chain/Storage and creating a Digital Marketplace. Though strongly anchored on agrarian values, the innovation of StarAgri business concept lies intransforming the archaic product-focused approach to agribusiness, into a service-driven model that is aligned with the modern business psyche.
From cultivation to commercialization, StarAgri undoubtedly stands at the critical juncture of India’s new sunrise industry. In 2014, the company’s pioneering spirit caught the eye of Singapore’s largest investment holding, Temasek, who invested a significant minority stake and dubbed StarAgri as one of the high growth companies in agriculture globally.
Today, StarAgri boasts as Asia’s leading post-harvest solution company, grounded on its winning formula of empowering farmers, building the right infrastructure and advanced data analytics. At the crux of its success is also its hands-on approach, as embodied by Mr. Agarwal’s leadership style, who is equally involved in the farmlands as he is in the boardroom, earning him the title of Entrepreneur of the Year in 2014.
“Simply put: farming feeds the country. Farming feeds the future,” affirms Mr. Agarwal. “As a business, profits are important, but a stronger drive for us is being cognizant of our purpose as a platform to uplift India for a better tomorrow.”