Exit Interview

Dane Kuper and Dustin Balsley

"We didn’t look at competitive software and think that we could succeed by adding 10 percent more functionality or 10 percent more usability. We started with a blank slate. We asked ‘what is the most usable, functional system? That's what we set out to do and that's what we continue to do."

Exit Interview

Colin Hurd and Joel Harris

"There's certain times in a startup's life where you question the future -- really, really question if you're going to survive. And that can be extremely hard. It's emotionally tolling. You can't teach it in a textbook. It's like a great education and if you do it right, instead of paying for it, you'll actually get paid to do it."

Nick Evens

Veridian Credit Union

"The entrepreneurs that are starting in Iowa are lucky because Iowa Nice does exist."

Investor Insights

Ag Startup Engine values mentorship highly. Learn from our members about entrepreneurship through their own experiences in agtech.

Al Myers

Ag Leader Technologies

"I see big opportunities for those businesses that make information more available or more importantly, more usable, whether that's the crop farmer or the livestock farmer. The ability to make decisions using data in agriculture needs to get better."

Steve Bruere

Peoples Company

"Successful people are always learning. They always want to know what you know, and they're not telling you how the world works... I've tried to be willing to help young people out and lend an ear, and be willing to give advice.  Every time I do that, I think I learned more from them than they learned from me!"

Eric Peterson

Summit Agricultural Group

"Iowa really is where ag tech businesses belong. Iowa needs to own ag tech and Iowa State University should be the center of it."

Bruce Rastetter

Summit Agricultural Group

"The driving desire to learn new things is a consistent trait of people that want to continue to make a difference in life and do significant things."

Adam Koppes

Iowa Farm Bureau Rural Vitality Fund

"Entrepreneurial people hit every obstacle that comes along and continue to plow forward and continue to figure out a way around the obstacle...  I can see a night and day the difference between early stage entrepreneurs in terms of whether they have an inquisitive mind and are willing to go that extra step."

Alison Doyle

ISU Research Park

"Most companies are really looking for people. And the next generation of talent demands something different. What we're trying to create is an environment to attract talent.  That’s a work in progress, but we're headed in the right direction."

Community Insights

Martin Gross

Gross-Wen Technologies

"New programs like the Ag Startup Engine and ISU Startup Factory have definitely played a role in advancing me, not just as a scientist-engineer, but as someone that knows how to run a business. It seems like the ecosystem here at ISU now is a completely different place than when we started."

The Midwest Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

Opportunities and Challenges

We launched the Ag Startup Engine to fill a gap in funding and mentoring agtech startups in Iowa. While we’re excited about the progress the existing portfolio businesses have made to date, we recognize that our work fills only one niche in what could be a much more vibrant ecosystem for agricultural entrepreneurs.

Feature Articles

Precision Agriculture Technologies

Perspectives from Brazil

We just returned from Brazil, where we accompanied twelve Iowa State University students who are a part of a travel course that is examining farmer perspectives on current and future precision agriculture technologies for crop production.  Our time was spent in Mato Grasso, one of the frontiers of agricultural production in Brazil.

Farming Algae with Martin Gross

Farm & Rural Ag Network

In this edition of the podcast Future of Agriculture, Farm & Rural Ag Network sat down with Martin Gross of Gross-Wen Technologies to discuss algae farming and how it will shape the future.

Other Media


© 2020 by Ag Startup Engine LLC.  |  ISU Research Park  |  2710 South Loop Drive  |  Ames, Iowa 50010