Agtech venture capital firm Omnivore announced its exit from the Bengaluru-based Barrix Agro Sciences. Omnivore has signed a definitive agreement to sell its stake to Sumitomo Chemical India Limited (SCIL), a subsidiary of Sumitomo Chemical in Japan. Details of the deal were not disclosed.

This is Omnivore’s third exit in just over one year. In August 2022, Omnivore exited Eruvaka to Netherlands-based Nutreco, and earlier this year, Omnivore exited MITRA to Mahindra.

Founded in 2011 by Lokesh Makam, Barrix was an early innovator of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and integrated Plant Nutrition Management (IPNM) products. Barrix’s cutting-edge R&D has supported launches of several eco-friendly crop protection and nutrition products, including pheromone dispersion technologies to monitor and trap agricultural pests.

Agtech investing

Barrix was one of the earliest entrants in India’s then-nascent agtech startup ecosystem. Omnivore, which pioneered agtech investing in India, became Barrix’s first institutional investor in 2013 alongside IIM-Ahmedabad’s CIIE. For this exit, EY was the exclusive financial advisor to Barrix and its shareholders, Omnivore said in a statement.

Jinesh Shah, Managing Partner at Omnivore, said, “Before Barrix, Indian farmers had limited access to effective, affordable, and eco-friendly crop protection products. Over the years, the start-up has proven the efficacy of their innovations in minimising crop damage and labour costs. We are very proud to have been an early believer in Barrix. Sumitomo’s stake in the company ensures that farmers across the globe will have access to these sustainable solutions.”

Chetan Shah, Managing Director of SCIL, said: “The acquisition shall create greater synergies, deliver maximum value for our shareholders and a wider product portfolio for our customers.”