As the global population grows and requires more food sources, the agricultural industry is answering the call to action with innovation that aims to be efficient, cost-effective and sustainable.

Aker Technologies is providing an “under the green canopy” drone-based solution for farmers to improve the way they monitor crop disease, insects and other common crop stressors. This technology guides farmers’ decision-making when it comes to managing their crops in hopes of producing higher yields.

The agriculture industry continues to become more tech-driven to keep up with demands for higher yields. Advances in technology have created many opportunities to improve farming operations, and with future generations looking for even more availability with tech, there are new ideas, products and services being developed every day.

Everything from vertical farming, new satellite technologies, and even the emergence of autonomous tractors have changed the industry in a matter of years. Aker Technologies seeks to do the same.

Based in Chicago, Aker had six employees and 57 customers in 2017. It expects to grow to more than 1,000 customers by the end of 2018, in part because of successful pilot programs in Faribault County, Minn.

Company principal Orlando Saez, a veteran entrepreneur, told an audience at the Early Stage Symposium the company has raised about $2.3 million in financing and is looking to close out a round in which it raises $4 million more. Read the full story here.