As 2023 comes to an end, the LANDE team reflects on a year of growth and consolidation, marked by a series of decisions and initiatives that have bolstered the company’s position as a leading force on Europe’s agricultural finance market.
€550,000 financing round: a catalyst for growth
We started the year with a successful seed financing round that involved two Angel Investment syndicates in Latvia – LatBan & BadIdeas – as well as prominent startup equity investment platform SeedBlink.
This strategic move affirmed the strength of our business model and the immense potential of our platform. The investment ensured our financial stability and significantly contributed to our development, including by allowing us to enact our plans of expanding to a new European market, building on the encouraging success we’d had in the Baltics.
We launched our financial service for farmers in Romania in February 2023. Choosing the country was easy as it is a major agricultural hub in CEE and we were certain that we would be able to connect with a wide range of farmers and provide our investors with a varied selection of agricultural projects.
In the months since, we’ve built a great team of professionals with extensive experience in the agribusiness and financial sectors and have gained strong brand awareness on the local market. We’ve financed dozens of farmers all over Romania and forged business partnerships that are helping us expand our reach and impact.
A trusted partner for farmers
We are also happy to report a solid increase in the fundraising volume on the LANDE platform since last year: the farmer projects published from our three markets totalled 11.2 million in 2023 – that's 110% above the 2022 level. The largest project on our platform this year had a value of €110,000.
As the agricultural financing gap in the EU reached 62.3 billion euros in 2022, with the highest gap recorded in Romania (€11.4 billion), we are confident that our investors are making a real difference in the lives of the farmers they support. We are excited to continue our mission of reducing the financing gap in the EU’s farming industry.
A thriving investor community
The LANDE investor community is a growing group of smart and inspired individuals who adhere to our goal of empowering European farmers by providing easy access to financing to help develop their businesses.
Our investor base has essentially doubled during 2023, currently surpassing 6,300 individuals from 28 European countries. The LANDE business model only works when there is a balance between farmers and investors, and we have managed to strike and maintain that balance, as we’ve been publishing agricultural projects at a constant pace, with each of them quickly attracting financing from hundreds of investors.
Most investors contribute relatively small amounts to projects, with the minimum amount being €50, but some choose to invest larger amounts – sometimes as high as €25,000 or more in a single project.
Milestone: €1 million in interest
Our investors have reaped rich rewards from the commitment they’ve made to the agricultural sector through LANDE projects, with the total interest accumulated by our community having reached €1 million in December – a wonderful achievement to end this great year!
Charting the course for 2024
With renewed optimism, we embark on the year 2024, poised to embark on a new chapter of growth, innovation, and impact. Our ambitious plans for the year include:
Boosting lending volumes
Our financial goal for 2024 is to double the lending volumes we recorded in 2023, thus helping more farmers across all our markets and provide more opportunities for investors to support agricultural businesses while growing their portfolios.
Obtaining the ECSP license
The LANDE team has been working closely with regulators in order to make sure the company meets all the necessary conditions to receive the European Crowdfunding Service Provider license, which we are on track to obtain in the early days of next year. This will represent a confirmation of our desire to comply with all regulatory requirements, provide more operational clarity for all stakeholders, and allow us to scale our services with renewed confidence.
Major technical upgrade to streamline user experience
The rapid growth of our investor community and loan volume has led us to make the important decision of embarking on an end-to-end upgrade of our platform’s financial core and technical infrastructure, as our initial build had started to become overloaded. We want to make sure that investors have a smooth experience in building their LANDE portfolio and that no technical issues stand in their way.
We are currently engaged in this major IT development project – which will not only fix some existing issues but also introduce new functionalities, protocols, and working methods to prepare for future growth – and we will release the new version of our platform in the first part of 2024.
Exploring new markets
We are actively seeking opportunities to expand our presence into new markets, particularly in Central & Eastern Europe. This will allow us to connect with a wider range of farmers, investors, and partners, further strengthening our position as a leading force in European agricultural finance.
A collective mission
As we look ahead, we are filled with optimism and excited about new ideas and opportunities. LANDE is poised to play an increasingly significant role in the agricultural financing sector, empowering farmers, driving sustainable practices, and contributing to a more prosperous future for all stakeholders. Join us on this journey as we shape a better future for agriculture, one project at a time.
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