Farmeron has a new agri Business Intelligence platform
After the founder of Farmeron Matija Kopić sold the to US based company Virtus Nutrition, a technology-oriented industry leader in fatty acid nutrition for the dairy cattle, the business horizons just open up. We talked about the future of the company with Matija Kopić, and he points out a new product in their offerings a comprehensive agri Business Intelligence platform.
Farmeron is one of perhaps the most famous start-up stories from Croatia. What is the growth potential and what do you expect in this segment? What are your 2015 business and results?
- Farmeron is currently going through a healthy expansion after being acquired by Virtus Nutrition. The new owner is investing significant additional capital resources into the development of new product lines, international expansion and further expansion in our most important, US market. The foundation of our future growth is a very serious overhaul of our product, based on new technologies and concepts like Microservices and Lambda architectures. We are deeply involved with these efforts. One of the new product we're offering as of recent is a comprehensive agri Business Intelligence platform, designed to bring an easy and fast, competitive advantage to livestock farms which are perhaps not fully ready to embrace the full scope of the complete herd & business management platform we offer. It is sort of an introductory platform for the farms making the digital technology leap for the first time.
The news that you are leaving Croatia hasn't been received really well, although we must say this is not a completely correct information, i.e. the software production is still in Osijek.
- I'm not exactly sure what do you mean by "leaving" - we're definitely still here. As mentioned, the ownership structure has changed, but the majority of our team remains in our Osijek and Zagreb offices, focusing on Product development and Data science. We are continuing to invest significant resources into educating and hiring new people to join our engineering team, so we're here to stay. Data Science is becoming a particularly important theme for us: as our database grows, the need for well-trained data scientists and advanced Big Data technology became a priority for us.
What does it look like when in business, the company and you personally, need to literally work on two continents?
It can be messy! I've spent much time on the plane throughout the last six years. The main challenge is to ensure the alignment between our teams on two continents, so that's what I was mostly focused on. Additionally, one of the personally tougher challenges for me was to find and retain good people in the US. The job market is very competitive, and we had to find individuals with very special skills (e.g. a combination of advanced software skills and the knowledge of dairy industry.) I've spent tremendous amount of time trying to find the right people for the work we needed to complete.
What are your plans for 2017?
Important 2017 plans involve technological upgrades of our main product line, paired with the introduction of our agri BI product to some large European markets.