Startup Graduates from McGovern Incubator

By Anne Ju

Hands with plant over dirtBolstered by a $2.3 million venture capital investment, an agricultural technology startup has moved on from its first home in Cornell’s life sciences business incubator, a little more than a year after it arrived. Agronomic Technology Corp., which makes the software Adapt-N, is the first fledgling business to “graduate” from the three-year-old Kevin M. McGovern Family Center for Venture Development in the Life Sciences. Co-founded by Steve Sibulkin, Holly Trytten, and Greg Levow ’04, Agronomic Technology Corp. offers software to help farmers optimize nitrogen fertilization, based on work from the lab of Harold Van Es, professor of soil and water management. Taking science out of the lab and into the marketplace involves many complex moving parts, noted McGovern Center Director Lou Walcer. In Agronomic Technology’s case, “the university’s technology licensing did things right, Harold Van Es as a scientist did things excellently, the center did its part right, and the Agronomic Technology team did their part excellently,” Walcer said. “And now they’re on their way.”