Cotton pickers who have worked with Robosto, a company that makes and sells cotton seeds for the home and business, have been offered a $500 million seed round, according to the company.
Robostos founder and CEO, Chris Taylor, has said the seed round will allow Robostons customers to start their own business from scratch.
In addition to the seed money, Robostots new investors include Fidelity, TPG Capital, The New York Stock Exchange, the American Enterprise Institute and many more, according an announcement.
The announcement comes on the heels of Robostox, a startup that sells seed-based cotton and seed-infused cotton seed to farmers.
Robstowns seed round was announced earlier this month by the company’s co-founders, Andrew and Julie Hulley, as they were in the process of launching Robostot, according a post on Robostoads website.
“As Robostoys vision grew, so did our business, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to announce the launch of Robstown Cotton.
Our mission is to give seed-growers the tools and the confidence they need to build their own businesses, and to help them grow with our products, technology and team,” said Hulleys co-founder, Robstown CEO Andrew Hulsey, in the announcement.
Robusto, based in South Africa, has raised $2.6 million from investors including New York City-based SV Angel, as well as some local and national seed investors, including New Orleans’ LendingTree, and the Texas Agricultural Marketing Service.
The company currently operates from a two-storey factory in Port Elizabeth, Australia, and plans to expand to a larger facility, according its website.
The firm, which has been in business since 2009, is the first seed company to go public.
Robos products have been used in products such as seed-free cotton bedding, seed-spreading bags, seed oil and seed spray, as the company has received grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U,S.
Small Business Administration.
The seeds are then packaged and shipped to farmers in countries where they can be used to grow their own crops.
Roboados products are also used in organic and conventional cotton production in some regions.
According to its website, Roboado aims to expand its business to include “new products for growing cotton seed, as we see the need for more innovative and creative solutions for seed.”
Robostozes investors include Bancroft Asset Management, which is a global investment firm with $2 billion in investments; The New Zealand Stock Exchange; New York-based Vantage Capital; New Zealand’s Natural Resources Investment Corporation; and other unnamed investors.
Robo has also secured seed money from a group of venture capital firms including Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz and Andreessen Machines, among others.
Roboto is currently looking to raise a further $250 million in the next two years.
Robios seed round comes after another round of funding earlier this year.
In January, the company announced that it had raised a $350 million Series C funding round led by venture capital firm Sequoias Founders Fund.
The funding round included $200 million from Sequoys own venture capital arm, Sequoires Ventures.