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Monsanto and Microsoft come together to invest in Brazil agriculture tech startups


U.S. biotech company Monsanto and Microsoft announced on Monday a partnership to invest in agricultural technology startups in Brazil.

Monsanto MON -2.02% will join a Brazilian investment fund with up to 300 million reais (£69.83 million), managed by Microsoft MSFT -0.02% , evaluating ideas for new digital tools to be applied to agricultural production in the country, executives said.

Selected ideas will receive initial funding of up to 1.5 million reais (£348,831.91) for early development. Project owners will have the option to pay back the investment after three years or convert the money into equity.

Rodrigo Santos, head of Monsanto in Latin America, told reporters on the sidelines of the Global Agribusiness Forum (GAF 2016), “We want to foster new startups in the agricultural sector. There is a vast area for research and development”.

Technology company Qualcomm QCOM -1.08%, managed by Microsoft, is also investing in the Brazilian investment fund.

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The author Paul