This University of Colorado Boulder Startup Is Bringing Farming Into The Digital Age
As technology continues to improve, we find more and more ways to automate inefficient, manual tasks. Across all industries, modern innovation is enhancing productivity and transforming how we will do things for the foreseeable future. However, very rarely do we find a company that saves as much time for its users as Boulder, Colorado-based Uzio Technology.
Founded in 2018, Uzio is helping bring farming and agriculture into the digital age through a solar-powered energizing device that provides real-time updates to farmers on the condition of their electric fences. As a result, the company is helping farmers save hundreds of hours per year on manual maintenance in addition to promoting sustainable agricultural practices.
The World’s Most Innovative Electric Fence Add-on
Uzio has developed the first solar electric fence energizer that can be monitored from a smartphone. In ten minutes, farmers will be able to install an Uzio energizer on their electric fences and immediately begin receiving real-time updates on various data points, including voltage levels and battery life. Additionally, users can set up notifications that indicate when something has interfered with their fence’s operation. Should farmers decide to turn off their electric fences, they can easily do so remotely from the Uzio app.
With Uzio, farmers will be able to implement rotational grazing much more easily on their farms. By strategically repositioning cattle according to a set schedule, farmers allow their land to “rest,” thereby decreasing soil erosion and enhancing its ability to absorb carbon from the atmosphere. Without Uzio, farmers would spend up to 14 hours each week adjusting their fences and testing for issues in order to implement rotational grazing. Now, users will be able to monitor the health of their electric fences remotely, thereby reducing the time they need to spend manually checking for faults. Within two years of using Uzio, farmers will save over 1,000 hours on fence monitoring and maintenance!
Uzio Primed For Large-Scale Impact
Uzio’s current leadership team includes Zoe Welz and Andre Houssney. Welz graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder with an engineering degree and has since turned her energy towards developing solutions that impact society and the environment on a broad scale. She is currently an environmental engineering intern for a civil engineering firm, Kleinfelder. Houssney owns and operates Jacob Springs Farm, an organic farm in Boulder, CO. He was pulled into Uzio as a result of his past experiences developing agricultural projects that have helped generate income for over 1,000 families in Zambia.
The Uzio team participated in Catalyze CU, a flagship venture accelerator program out of the University of Colorado that supports startups through mentorship and financial support. Over the course of ten weeks throughout the summer, a handful of entrepreneurs are given the opportunity to participate in the program which culminates in a large pitch event. This year, over 250 people attended the event which was kicked off by Uzio’s CEO, Welz.
Triple Bottom Line Approach
This Untold Spotlight Initiative story provides a real-life example of a company executing on the Triple Bottom Line approach. With their product, the Uzio team has built a profitable business model that will save farmers time and reduce the negative environmental impact of poor grazing practices. For those of you interested in trying out Uzio’s energizer, sign up to participate in a beta launch of the product here!
As you develop your business plan, think about all of the ways that your services or products can create value. Rather than focusing solely on your economic model, remember to articulate how you improve the lives of your customers and society more broadly. If you can create a three-pronged value proposition, you will have no trouble growing your business!