The agribusiness aims to grow premium quality local fresh fruits and vegetables year-round in the region using hydroponics.

Ankush is a journalist hailing from India, who has edited and written for publications in his home country, the UAE, US, and UK. Previously the editor of Gulf Business in Dubai and of Entrepreneur in India, Ankush is a keen student of economics, a follower of Manchester United since 1996 and a disciple of Archer.

UAE-based agribusiness Pure Harvest Smart Farms has raised $4.5 million in a seed round, it announced on Thursday.

Pure Harvest, which is a hydroponics-based agribusiness, said that the funding was provided by a leading federal government-backed fund, its technology partners, and a consortium of angel investors.

These investors include Magnus Olsson, founder and MD at Careem, Hazem Abu Khalaf, CFA, director at The Abraaj Grou, Jim Finnigan, co-Founder of SoFi, Peter Satow, founder & CEO of PESA Advanced Hydroponics, Charles Anderson, founder & CEO of Currency, Bina Khan and James Joy, co-Founders and managing partners of Summit Venture Partners,

This round follows an earlier $1.1 million pre-seed round led by Abu Dhabi-based Shorooq Investments in 2016.

Pure Harvest is co-founded by Sky Kurtz, a former private equity investor based in Silicon Valley, and his Emirati business partner Mahmoud Adi.

The agribusiness aims to grow premium quality local fresh fruits and vegetables year-round in the region using hydroponics to overcome its harsh climate and scarce freshwater resources.

Hydroponics farming is the process of growing plants in solutions, rather than soil, allowing for the careful control of the nutrients the plants receive.

It also revealed that with the funding, it will complete construction of its fully climate controlled greenhouse facility in Nahel, UAE and begin selling its products in the second half of 2018, following which it aims to expand further into the GCC.

The products would include tomatoes, capsicum, strawberries, cucumbers, and eggplants among other food products.