Yes, they can sting pretty bad, though its worth it just to get at that sweet golden nectar they so fearlessly protect. However, aside from honey, honeybees are actually pretty important for our day-to-day lives. Honeybee pollination is responsible for about a third of the food that hits our stores. With growing demand from farmers for more and more hives to be moved from one place to another, comes the dooming threat of colony collapse. A phenomenon becoming increasingly common in hives, killing the bees and causing devastation to crop yields. With this threat looming, beekeepers are forced to constantly manually tend and check on the bees; making changes based on nothing more than hunches and experience. Enter BeeHero, who’s developing a solution to bring the ancient profession of beekeeping into the IoT era.
A solution that can improve crop yields by 30%
Spread over vast areas, beekeepers are demanded to invest a lot of time and labor caring for each hive. Meaning that hives may go untended for weeks between inspections, adding to the chance of colony collapse from mites or other threats. BeeHero’s simple and cheap product combines Big Data analytics with a smart algorithm, enabling beekeepers to manage dozens of hives remotely and even gain insight into the well-being of the colony, while saving themselves, from a few nasty stings along the way.
From the hive, the data is transferred to the cloud where the machine-learning algorithm runs its magic, sending real-time information to an online dashboard easily managed by the beekeeper. The system is able to early detect and alert if a colony is under stress, potentially saving colonies from total collapse. Allowing not only for the beekeepers to stop running frantically from hive to hive but for the bee colonies to flourish and thrive. With billions of bees and more than 20,000 hives already connected, the company states that its effective and simple product can increase crop yields by as much as 30%.
BeeHero was founded in 2017 by CEO Omer Davidi, CSO Michal Roizman, COO Itai Kanot, and CTO Yuval Regev. Company COO, Kanot was basically born in a beehive, growing up around bees is whole life, eventually managing some of Israel’s largest hives. Kanot was the one who introduced the rest of the team to pollination and bees, connecting Davidi’s AgriTech experience with Roizman’s HRI expertise for a modern approach to the increasing colony collapse problem.
Looking to expand into U.S. agriculture, the Israeli startup just raised a $4 million seed round, with investors including Rabo Food and Agri Innovation Fund, UpWest, iAngels, Plug and Play, and J-Ventures. With a total of 10 employees, who are split between their offices in Israel and Palo Alto, the company looks to continue to grow and expand, still investing a lot of focus into its R&D department.