An EMBA alumni start-up that uses data from space to address global issues has secured £100,000 in funding.
Sushma Shankar, Natalia Efremova and David Carter all met when they studied the Oxford Executive MBA at Saïd Business School in 2013. Hailing from Russia, Australia and India, they came up with the idea for their company Deep Planet after participating in GOTO (Global Opportunities and Threats Oxford), Saïd’s action-orientated problem-solving community geared towards addressing some of the most complex issues that face the world today.
Deep Planet, based at Harwell science park in Oxfordshire, uses satellite imagery and machine learning to provide intelligence to businesses and policy makers aiming to solve global issues such as climate change, water and food shortages. It tracks crops through satellites, providing predictions on plant health, soil moisture and fertiliser usage and helps farmers to reduce costs. It monitors water assets, helping the industry to reduce costs and forecast water levels. The business uses remote sensing data to help the oil and gas industry to monitor leaks and methane emissions.
The funding that has been secured will be split between the European Space Agency (ESA)’s Business Incubation Centre and the Copernicus Incubation Programme, which supports promising businesses using Copernicus satellite data. The tranche of funding will be used to support their first project – monitoring grape crops. It is now also working on pilot schemes for customers in the areas of agriculture, water and gas leak detection.