January 29, 2020
30MHz took another major step after the Series A investment in the spring of 2019 by adding Ernst van den Ende (WUR) and Roger Gerritzen (Yeald & Agri Invest) to the supervisory board. The company that offers a data platform for the horticultural sector has also strengthened its commercial position by appointing Ronald Carpentier in the role of CCO.
Van den Ende and Gerritzen have both been working in the Dutch horticulture sector for years and both acknowledge data is playing an increasingly important role. “New technologies enable entrepreneurs and researchers to extract information from data that takes the sector to a higher level,” says Van den Ende. Gerritzen adds: “The opportunities lie particularly in unlocking and integrating them. There is often a lot of data available, such as weather data, experience data of varieties in terms of growth, yields and (labour) costs. But linking these is often difficult. 30MHz can contribute to by evaluating processes in a refreshing way. I am more than happy to put my knowledge and network to use for this purpose.”
Digitalisation increasingly important
According to Gerritzen, major steps still have to be taken in the field of digitisation. “There lie great opportunities for horticulture to further professionalise and improve efficiency while tackling labour challenges and increasing quality demands. It’s crucial to translate all available information into clear insights.”
Van den Ende also sees that digital horticulture is becoming increasingly important. “There are many developments such as internationalisation, sustainability, and a lack of a good workforce that requires a great deal of knowledge and insight from entrepreneurs. Digitalisation can greatly support this.” Via the 30MHz platform, growers can call in advice from crop consultants and share valuable insights with team members or competition colleagues. This offers opportunities in the field of knowledge transfer, also to new generations of growers. In addition, the system encourages more optimal use of commodities due to crop level climate data.
A sector on the move
Based on that vision, CCO Ronald Carpentier has the clear task of commercially convincing the sector of this need. He uses a strategy that’s based upon the strengths of the platform: “We approach companies based on the idea that they add value to their own product or proposition by using the services of 30MHz. Think, for example, of digital consultancy in the field of light, screening or Integrated Pest Management. We are clearly seeing the sector moving towards a future where data is a permanent part of business operations.”
About Ernst van den Ende
Ernst van den Ende (1962) studied Plant Pathology at Wageningen University and obtained his PhD in the Phytopathology chair group. He then worked as a researcher at various test stations in the field of fruit growing and horticulture. With the emergence of Greenports in the Netherlands, Ernst van den Ende has also served on various advisory boards to help shape regional innovation. Per 1 September 2009, Van den Ende has been Managing Director of the Plant Sciences Group (PSG) of Wageningen University & Research. Furthermore, he has been a member of the Top Team for Horticulture and Propagation Materials since February 2011 and is now joining the 30MHz Supervisory Board.
About Roger Gerritzen
Roger Gerritzen has been active in international horticulture for almost twenty years. He held the position of CFO at both Syngenta and Dümmen Orange and was responsible for mergers and acquisitions. In those years Gerritzen built up a strong network and gained broad international experience in horticulture. In addition to his roles as a partner at Yeald and Agri Invest and member of the Supervisory Board of For Farmers, with immediate effect, he joins the 30MHz Supervisory Board.
About Ronald Carpentier
Ronald Carpentier is an experienced leader in digital technology organizations that want to change the world. He started working in the internet industry around 2000 and has been hooked on all things digital ever since, aiming on structurally driving 30MHz to the next commercial levels. His track record includes companies such as Quby, inventor of smart thermostat Toon, and augmented reality pioneer Layar.