Rajeeb Kumar Roy launches The Agrihub:

India: New online platform wants to become the Alibaba of horticulture

India is an important market for greenhouse horticulture, but for farmers, growers and suppliers it's often not easy to develop their businesses due to lack of a rigid supply network. For this reason the Agrihub was founded: an online platform where basically all suppliers and companies in the Indian horticulture sector can be found.

"We want to become the Alibaba of agri- & horticulture", says founder Rajeeb Kumar Roy. With his own company Agriplast, he experienced firsthand how difficult it can be for a foreign or domestic supplier to be discovered within the local horticulture sector. "With Agrihub we have created a portal that basically everybody can join and that will direct you to whatever you need: whether you are looking for a gerbera grower or a greenhouse builder, everybody in the Indian sector is included and can be found there."

Kumar Roy is a familiar name in the Indian greenhouse industry; after obtaining his masters degree in Agricultural Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology in Kharagpur, he soon started to work for several international horticulture companies related to the manufacturing of agricultural films and other greenhouse accessories. Later on he founded the Agriplast group of companies; not only serving as an Indian distributor for established international horticulture suppliers like Mardenkro and Urbinati, but also as a developer of complete greenhouse and net house projects with his company Agriplast Protected Cultivation Pvt Ltd.

Growth in Indian horticulture

Kumar Roy explained that, with a growing population of more than 1.33 billion people, India is one of the most important areas for the development of sustainable and safer protected horticulture. "Currently the country has more than 10,000 hectares of protected cropping, mostly in simple and basic plastic greenhouses. Not even 1,000 hectares in India can be seen as more dedicated and efficient high tech operations. However as a result of recent available subsidies, growers become more interested in improvement."

Kumar Roy noticed that capital is available, but he also saw that the development of the more dedicated projects with smart technology was slow due to the lack of a decent supply chain and poor penetration of technology in a price sensitive market. "Many farmers and growers do not know much about technology, or they do not want to invest in it because they are not familiar with the availability and benefits of present day technology. They simply do not know where to buy it."

Bring everybody together

With the Agrihub portal, Kumar Roy aims to bring everybody together in one platform. "From machinery and fertilizers to greenhouse structures and seeds, any supplier can subscribe to the platform free of charge in order to showcase their products. Companies can also opt for one of the various premium subscription options to boost their business via the platform. Farmers and growers can browse the platform free of charge to search for dedicated solutions for their problems or demands."

Rajeeb Kumar Roy with Loris Gallo of Urbinati, one of the companies that can be found on The Agrihub

Sell, buy and review

Just like with Alibaba, they can see reviews of the products and sellers. Sellers can be contacted directly and the products can be ordered directly from the website. "As it is completely focused on the agricultural and horticultural market, the search results will only show suppliers that are close to the search location. So if an Indian grower is searching for a greenhouse structure, he will find greenhouse suppliers on Agrihub that are directly available in India."

The Agrihub intends to go international soon, and an app is being developed as well.

Visit www.theagrihub.com for more information.

For more information:
The Agrihub
Rajeeb Kumar Roy
+91 99167 55555

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