Latest Innovations in AgTech



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Technology has transformed the way food is produced, managed, and distributed. Many startups in the growing field of AgTech (Agri-Tech) are utilizing new advances in robotics, AI, deep learning, IoT, drones, satellites, and biotech to shape the future of agriculture. AgTech first became an investment sector a few years ago and is still one of the fastest growing areas of innovation. AgTech is still in its early stages, and plenty of opportunities remain. Attend our event to hear from leading entrepreneurs and investors in the AgTech industry and the Royse AgTech Innovation Network.


6:00 pm to 7:00 pm Check In, Food, Networking Reception

7:00 pm to 8:30 pm Panel Discussion, Q & A

8:30 pm to 9:00 pm More Networking

About the Panelists:

- Erica Riel-Carden is a Principal at Global Capital Markets, a boutique investment bank that specializes in middle market transactions. She provides transaction and financial services for emerging growth companies and investors in the food system. Her technical background spans agriculture, food, technology, & law. Prior to becoming an investment banker, Erica advised companies as a business attorney, and, she grew wholesale Ericaceous flowers in Northern Ohio. She currently sits on the Advisory Board for the SCU Food and Agribusiness Institute and is a Mentor at the UC Davis Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. -

-Rob Trice is the Founder of The Mixing Bowl and Better Food Ventures. In 2013, he began to leverage his background in telecom, mobile and internet venture capital to fund companies that apply IT to the food and agriculture sectors. Rob previously worked at Swisscom Ventures, SK Telecom Ventures, Nokia Growth Partners and Nokia Venture Partners (now BlueRun Ventures).

- Dennis Donohue leads the Center for Innovation & Technology at Western Growers. He has been lauded for his leadership in agriculture where he has played a key role in creating innovative business models, identifying new technologies and developing initiatives that integrate agtech and innovation into the business structure at organizations such as Cultiva Global, European Vegetable Specialties/Royal Rose, River Ranch Fresh Foods, Fresh Express Farms and Fresh Western Marketing. Additionally, Donohue served as the Mayor of Salinas from 2006 to 2012.

- Max Bruner is the CEO and Co-founder of Mavrx, a leader in optimizing inputs and profitability for the agricultural supply chain by leveraging AI, imaging, and field data. Before moving into agriculture tech, Max worked with the Obama Administration as an investment advisor at the U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), where he managed the agency's clean tech budget and investments. He has been named a Forbes 30 under 30 and a U.S. Harry S. Truman Scholar. A graduate of the University of Cambridge and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Max has an extensive background in U.S. energy and agriculture policy.

- Dr. Glenda Humiston, Vice President of UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, brings over 25 years of policy development and program implementation supporting sustainability. She served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Tunisia and several years as a consultant on environmental and agricultural issues throughout the western states. President Obama appointed her California State Director for USDA’s Rural Development programs 2009 – 2015. From 1998 – 2001 she served President Clinton as Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment at USDA.

About the Moderator:
-Roger Royse is the founder of Royse Law Firm, PC, a business and tax law firm with offices in Northern and Southern California ( Roger practices in the areas of corporate and securities law, domestic and international tax, mergers and acquisitions, and fund formation. His clients include international emerging and middle-market companies and high net worth individuals. Roger has represented companies in a variety of industries, including clean tech, Internet, life sciences, entertainment and new media, sports, real estate, retail and mobile devices and applications.


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