HAMILTON, NEW ZEALAND – Leading developer of virtual fencing technology, Agersens, has been acquired by Gallagher, under a strategic change of ownership that will allow Gallagher to further improve the solution and accelerate commercial expansion across Australian and international markets.
Agersens, which was founded by Ian Reilly, designed and developed the eShepherd platform to allow graziers to control the location and movement of cattle using a web application and an intelligent, solar-powered neckband connected to the internet via a base station. Testing, including a fully-subscribed beta trial programme, shows the technology is proving effective in rotational grazing and protection of riparian zones.
Leading the Agersens team over the past two years is Jason Chaffey, who said Agersens and Gallagher shared a common vision for farm automation, expansion into global markets and partnering with industry to provide tools that facilitate data-driven decision making.
“Gallagher’s long and respected history in livestock management, international reach and vision, not only for virtual fencing but for promoting a more efficient, productive and sustainable grazing industry, means it is ideally placed to provide a strong foundation for the future growth of eShepherd,” Jason said.
“Agersens and Gallagher will work closely to maximise synergies and grow commercialisation of eShepherd, a technology we are confident will be a game-changer for livestock production.
“eShepherd is performing well at our test sites across Australia and New Zealand and the acquisition by Gallagher will accelerate growth and development of the product, to move towards providing producers in multiple markets with access to this tool which can genuinely improve the efficiency, profitability and sustainability of grazing businesses,” Jason added.
Gallagher Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director Kahl Betham says the company is delighted to add this new technology to the Gallagher lineup.
“For over 80 years, Gallagher has led the way in the agricultural industry. This acquisition further cements our commitment to investing in new ways of farming that will support customers with smarter, simpler solutions that make farm life easier and more profitable.
“We are thrilled to be adding further talent to the Gallagher family and are excited about what we can achieve together through our combined passion for innovation and customer experience,” Kahl added.
Gallagher first began investing in eShepherd in 2016. The acquisition will be finalised by 21 June 2021 at which time the current Agersens team of around 35 people will transition to Gallagher, under the overall leadership of Gallagher’s Global General Manager for Animal Management, Lisbeth Jacobs.
eShepherd is a virtual fencing system whereby individual animals are fitted with an intelligent neckband, which connects to a base station and web application.