Intelligent Issue 31 | Page 10


UK AgriTech secures £ 4 million to scale up eco-friendly insecticides
A UK AgriTech specialising in the next generation of green insecticides has secured a further round of investment totalling £ 4 million to scale up the development of its unique nature-inspired pesticides , the first of their kind to be developed worldwide .
Investment in this pre-Series A funding round was led by Yield Lab Europe . Other investors include Rubio Impact Ventures , Scottish Enterprise , Cavallo Ventures , SIS Ventures , UKI2S and several private AgriTech investors . Funding includes grant support from Innovate UK ’ s Transforming Food Production competition and Scottish Enterprise . This latest round brings the total raised by SOLASTA Bio to £ 5.5 million .
Based in Glasgow , SOLASTA Bio develops environmentally-friendly Insect Control Agents ( ICAs ) that meet a global need for new and effective crop protection . These ICAs also preserve the ecosystem by protecting beneficial insects such as bees .
The company has developed the world ’ s first technology platform for creating neuropeptide-based insect control products that are nature-inspired rather than selected from a synthetic chemistry library .
Better SME connectivity would contribute over £ 5 billion a year to local economies
Eight out of 10 companies that invested in customer engagement met their financial goals
New research of SME business owners has revealed that better connectivity among Manchester SMEs would contribute an extra £ 2.2 billion a year to the local economy , with the number rising to £ 3.09 billion for Birmingham .
With growth front of mind for SMEs , almost two-thirds ( 63 %) in Birmingham said their business could grow faster if they had access to better tech , compared to 53 % of Manchester SMEs – much higher than the national average of 43 %. Meanwhile ,
nearly half ( 46 % in Birmingham and 48 % in Manchester ) think that their business could be left behind because of poor tech ( compared to 39 % across the country ).
The analysis , conducted in partnership with Censuswide and Development Economics found that over half ( 53 %) of Birmingham businesses , and just under half ( 44 %) of Manchester businesses , think they could lose good employees as a result of poor connectivity .
Research from Twilio , a customer engagement platform that drives real-time , personalised experiences for today ’ s leading brands , shows that investment in customer engagement is a key driver of revenue growth .
Twilio ’ s fourth annual State of Customer Engagement Report reveals that , amid constrained resources and economic uncertainty , eight out of 10 ( 81 %) companies that invested in customer engagement met their financial goals . In the UK , 94 % of companies that invested in digital customer engagement saw revenues grow , with an average increase of 107 %.
strengthens a brand ’ s ability
to adapt to shifting market
conditions and evolving
consumer preferences . Customer
engagement leaders report
increased customer retention ,
conversion and long-term
loyalty , while six in ten ( 58 %) UK
businesses report that investment
in digital customer engagement
has improved their ability to meet
changing customer needs .
Twilio ’ s report is based on a
survey of more than 4,700 B2C
leaders in key sectors across the
world , plus a parallel survey of over 6,000 global consumers . �
The data shows that effective
customer engagement
10 intelligent
. tech
Intelligent SME . tech