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Gaia AI raises US$3M for forest data collection service

7 February 2023
Gaia AI has secured a US$3M Pre-Seed to automate the collection of forestry data, verify carbon credits, and build a data platform that empowers foresters to make the best financial andecological decisions for their forests. This round was led by E14 with participation fromUbiquity Ventures, Space Capital, and SOSV’s HAX.

Gaia AI is adapting LiDAR and computer vision hardware/software from the autonomousvehicle industry into a mobile tool for foresters to automate the collection of high quality belowcanopy data in forests. Foresters wear Gaia AI’s sensor backpack as they walk through theirforests and the backpack automatically collects and characterizes the width, height, species, anddensity of trees in the forest. This data is combined with existing above canopy data streams onGaia AI’s cloud platform to give foresters the most accurate depiction of the current state of theirforests.

By combining existing data streams and empowering foresters with new tools for data collection,Gaia AI is not only accelerating the data collection processes by over 100x, but also allowingforesters to make the best financial and environmental decisions for how to best manage theirland. The forestry industry has recently seen a significant amount of interest from SaaS startups, whichhave turned to available satellite data to provide additional value to foresters. These collectionmethodologies lack crucial below canopy data points which provide the most accurateinformation on a forest. By combining the two, satellite imagery and scaled data collection belowthe canopy, Gaia AI can unlock the full potential of satellite imagery by using below canopy dataas training data for machine learning models.

“Satellites provide a powerful tool for collecting data and understanding our world on a globalscale. But satellites have a number of limitations and benefit greatly from complementary datacollected by ground sensors. Gaia AI is building a proprietary platform to collect, process, andanalyze under-canopy data while leveraging the best in next-generation satellite capabilities” saidJustus Kilian, Partner at Space Capital.

This round of investment will be used to expand Gaia AI’s team, deploy their product in pilotswith some of the largest timber companies in the world, and add more functionality to their dataplatform. “We recognize the value and expertise that foresters bring to the forest. Our automated datacollection process adds to foresters’ existing skill set by seamlessly integrating into their existingworkflows. By augmenting a forester’s capabilities we are able to help the experts, foresters,make data driven decisions that optimize both carbon impact and financial bottom line” saidPeter McHale, Co-Founder and CEO of Gaia AI.

Source: Gaia AI

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