Nominee Q&A - Crover
We spoke to Dr Lorenzo Conti, Managing Director of Crover Ltd. You can find out more about Crover by visiting their website: https://www.crover.tech/
Tell us a bit about your business? When and why was it established, what does it offer and to whom?
Crover is centred around the commercialisation of the first-ever proprietary technology for locomotion in bulk solids (e.g. sand, grains, powders), through which the Crover team has built the world’s first ‘underground drone’ (i.e. a CROVER).
While applications of the CROVER range from soil sampling on Mars to the recovery of objects buried in sand dunes, Crover's first product is a probing device for the monitoring of cereal grains stored in bulk (e.g. whole barley in sheds or silos). This helps grain storage operators identify critical conditions early and maintain the quality of their stock. #SavingGrains
How has the company developed? (changes to products or services, staff, location, markets etc)
We are an Edinburgh-Based startup and we have recently grown our team size beyond 10 FTE.
What is the ethos behind the company and has this changed or developed since you started? Our mission is to leverage the CROVER method, the world's first proprietary method for locomotion in bulk solids, to enable humanity to 'reach below the surface'.
For grain storage operators, Crover’s autonomous monitoring solution means supply chain security, quality assurance, and peace of mind.
What’s the business’s USP?
The CROVER Grain Storage Monitoring system is the first product able to verify the condition of grain bulks while static in storage.
What investment have you sourced for the business and how has this helped you to go further?
So far the business has been funded primarily through a combination of directors’ loans, monetary awards and equity-free grants; in order to take the business to the next level, we are just about to launch our first funding round through an equity crowdfunding campaign on Crowdcube (https://www.crowdcube.com/).
What is the most important thing to remember when applying for funding/investment?
Remember why you set up your business in the first place.
Can you give us an example of an impactful collaboration your business has been involved in? Why has it been a success?
We are working with the Agri-EPI Centre and East of Scotland Farmers, and that partnership is leading to the creation of a new version of our system which will be the first autonomous sampling system for grain bulks while static in storage.
Go Further celebrates organisations with the ‘foresight to inform and respond to the changing world around them’. How does your organisation fulfil this?
There is a growing regulatory and market push to move away from the traditional way of maintaining grain quality during long-term storage, which is based on regular chemical fumigation, towards Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices, which require accurate monitoring of the condition of grain bulks, which current systems cannot provide – hence by making IPM possible during long-term storage we enable grain storage operators to follow modern best practices and get the most value out of their stock.
What has been your company’s greatest achievement?
First-ever TechCrunch Startup Battlefield company from Scotland
What is your business’s short and long-term plans?
Our long-term vision at Crover is to become the global leaders in underground robotics, and the first step towards that mission is to help grain storage operators reduce their mass and quality losses by at least 80% #SavingGrains
What sources of information or support (organisations, websites, books, podcasts, videos) would you recommend to other companies considering investment?
The Scottish Enterprise High-Growth Ventures team and programmes, our accountant Stephen (Accountech Solutions).