Exclusive | “With BloomsPal Network, we’re making agro-commodity supply chains more efficient.” Danilo Miranda, CEO-BloomsPal
Agriculture is one of the most fragile sectors. Agri buyers relying upon traditional supply chains struggle every day to cater to their customers. With the Cornonavirus pandemic, the situation only got worse.
In an exclusive interview with Agrigate Global’s Saura Panigrahi, Danilo Miranda, CEO of Bloomspal and one of the finalists of The Sustainable Agtech Challenge brought to you by The Yield Lab Institute and UNEP talks about how his startup is building a robust global supply chain management system for agri-produces to mitigate the risk of fragile agriculture trade.
Congratulations on making it to the Final-8 of The Sustainable Agtech Challenge by the Yield Lab Institute. How has the experience gone?
Thank you! It has been amazing and very fulfilled for us as a team. We have been pitching and showing our e-procurement software to agricultural leaders, investors, mentors, advisors, and researchers of the Universidad Austral. Being part of a program that is intended to work alongside with AgTech startups who are making outstanding contributions to the sustainability of the agricultural industry in LATAM has been an honor for us. We have had support from the Yield Lab Institute not only in guidance but also with a lot of exposure in the market, something very valuable for us.
How would you like to introduce your startup/innovation? Tell us more about the core area of operations and your team.
Agriculture is one of the most fragile industries. A rainy season in South America or a flood in south-east Asia can affect millions of people with shortages all around the world. Consumers don’t realize that the food that they eat, or the flowers that they buy, mostly don’t come from a local farm; it comes from producers all around the world that rely upon the global supply chains to fulfill their customers. Agro- Buyers, on the other hand, struggle every single day to effectively source reliable vendors all over the world and to be able to manage them to get what they need to operate their business. That’s something that we as founders of Bloomspal experienced more than once and after COVID-19 it only got worse. We as a team have more than 25 years in the global trade of flowers and being able to find and deal with new suppliers in regions/countries where the trade was not affected became the priority. The fragility of the agricultural trade hit us very hard.
After this experience, we started to optimize our sourcing and procurement strategy to enhance and ultra-speed our procurement processes. And once we understood how we can solve pain points through software engineering, we developed BloomsPal Network, solving the real problems that procurement leaders have every day within this industry. Our approach to our software was to build a cloud software strategically crafted to centralize the entire procurement operation for one of the most fast-paced and high-risk supply chains.
The Agriculture Sector is very dynamic in nature. What are the major challenges you are facing?
The unexpected nature of COVID-19 has unveiled that many companies are not well prepared for disruptions in their supply chain and are re-evaluating how to procure agro-commodities going forward. Today companies look for alternative ports, source alternative suppliers, develop dual sourcing strategies, and do critical reviews of trade routes. While in the past, many companies focused on optimizing the relationship with their existing suppliers to avoid shortages, we are seeing procurement leaders shift that focus to more resilient and faster adjustments in their supply chains for efficiency. And BloomsPal solves exactly that.
In recent times, agri-tech has become one of the favorites for investors. What would be your pitch to a prospective investor?
BloomsPal is a smart platform for buyers of agro-commodities to discover, manage & engage with their suppliers. We provide supplier engagement, procurement, logistics, and reporting tools strategically crafted to centralize and accelerate agro-procurement processes. BloomsPal focuses on the process that is held before the final purchase order is done, enabling procurement teams to reduce dramatically the usage of dispersed tools like spreadsheets, emails, Whatsapp, and phone calls (among others). On the other hand, farmers get access to a full suite of tools to confirm/modify/reject orders, manage business agreements, and make offers of their stock to the network of verified buyers.
We started operations in the 100B global wholesale flower trade and although we are a young company because we started in 2020; in 2021 we have connected our customers with more than 50 farms, mostly in Colombia (second-largest exporter). All these transactions have generated more than 3 million USD in revenue for the farms.
Agritech is booming with innovative ideas. What would be your advice to young entrepreneurs who would like to venture into this segment?
Today we are facing a gap between agriculture and technology. Today, the industry needs more innovation in every stage, from farm to consumer, the industry is full of opportunities!
Finally, tell us more about your plans
Well, our short-term plan is to consolidate within the global flower trade. We still have a lot to work on this sector, where Colombia is the number 1 producer and the second-largest exporter (80% of the flowers sold within the USA, come straight from farms in COL). In the near future, we are planning to expand our business to the global trade of fruits and vegetables.
Disclaimer: The views expressed here are his own and do not reflect the views of Agrigate Global.