Motivo Engineering has created a new company, Monarch Tractor. The seed for the move is the Motivo-developed and patented Harvest tractor, which started life as a United States Agency for International Development (USAID) project. The machine has been in development and testing in the U.S and India for the past five years.
Monarch Tractor was incorporated and funded as a separate entity with additional founders and investors. The new company will focus on developing and commercializing the core Harvest technology into a next-generation tractor that is smart, sustainable and robust, said the company.
The company said the Monarch tractor platform will combine mechanization, automation and data analysis to enhance farmer’s existing operations, alleviate labor shortages and maximize yields.
It will be fully electric and be available with an eco-system of smart implements, and have automation ready hardware and software. More details will be showcased at World Ag Expo in Tulare, Calif., Feb. 11-13.
“Ever since our work with the USAID,” said Praveen Penmetsa, CEO, Monarch Tractor, “people have been asking us when we would bring our technology to market. We looked at a wide variety of options, including licensing, before forming Monarch Tractor with Mark and Carlo who had the right combination of scaling and agriculture experience.”
President Mark Schwager was in operations leadership at Tesla, Zoox and Romeo Power and has experience with factory site selection, setup and startup. Carlo Mondavi has been named chief farming officer. A fourth-generation winegrower, Mondavi is an expert viticulturist with experience in organic, biodynamic and permaculture farming.
Dr. Zachary Omohundro, Monarch Tractor’s chief technology officer, has a PhD in robotics from Carnegie Mellon Robotics Institute.
Motivo Engineering is an engineering firm headquartered in Fremont, Calif., that has has helped clients develop and deploy technologies ranging from driverless cars to automated planting robots.