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Aerial imagery firm TerrAvion shuts down leaving up to $50 million in Chapt 11 liabilities, less than $50K in assets

 

Please Note: full court documents and some links are premium and available to Wine Executive News subscribers. Subscription info here:

 

 


 

Venture-funded aerial imagery firm TerrAvion shut down operations Friday, Sept. 4 just days after its August 31 after Chapter 11 filing ($). Court documents indicate up to $50 million in liabilities, half of that unsecured.

 

The Hayward-based company, founded by an experienced military drone expert, sought to provide aerial imagery to farmers designed help growers detect early signs of plant health and irrigation issues.

Venture funding

The company was seed-funded in 2014 by San Francisco Bay area start-up incubator Y Combinator along with Founder’s Club.

 

It received $10 Million in series A funding in 2017 ($). According to its website, TerrAvion had amassed a respected group of partners including John Deere and Fruition Sciences.

 

According to a 2017 news release:

“TerrAvion flights cover more than 20 million acres per week, and crops ranging from corn and soybeans to citrus and vineyard grapes. TerrAvion’s founder and CEO Robert Morris, a former U.S. Army drone platoon leader, said his goal is to triple the company’s current footprint to offer service to 80 percent of U.S. irrigated agriculture by the end of 2017.

“That will require more boots on the ground and wings in the air,” said Morris. “We are hiring aggressively and also working to forge more and bigger distribution partnerships across the U.S. in order to expand our presence.” Morris noted that every single customer cohort the company has is growing its acreage.”

Sudden and unexpected financial crash

In a Sept. 4 mass email, CEO and Founder Robert Morris said,

 

“TerrAvion is ceasing our operations today, September 4, 2020.  If you are a client, I strongly recommend downloading a copy of any data you have licensed and wish to retain immediately, as we do not know how long our infrastructure will remain active.

I wish we could have given everyone more of a heads up, but we were working and hoping to avoid this until just hours ago….Though TerrAvion delivered the most volume in our category–with positive and growing margins–agribusiness and capital markets seem to have incommensurate expectations. TerrAvion was caught in the middle.”

Full TerrAvion Email

Screen Shot 2020-09-08 at 7.16.51 AM

According to its Form 201, Chapter 11 filing ($), the Hayward, CA-based company estimates it has $0-$50,000 in assets and $10 million to $50 million in liabilities.

 

The 20 largest unsecured creditors listed in the company’s Form 204, Chapter 11 filing (Same link as Form 201, above), are owed more than $25 million.

Jointly administered “tax pass-through” Delaware LLCs included in case

In addition to TerrAvion’s main Chapter 11 filing, two wholly-owned Delaware LLC’s are jointly administered in the same case: Imagery Collection, LLC, and Farm Measurement, LLC.

 

According to a declaration filed by CEO Robert Morris, TerrAvion is the sole member of the two LLCs which are pass-throughs for tax purposes and do not maintain separate bank accounts or other financials. Those two LLCs, according to the declaration, are the lessees of aircraft used to obtain imagery for its customers.

20 Largest Unsecured Creditors, in descending order of amount owed  (rounded to the nearest dollar):

This curated list is for premium subscribers as are un-redacted versions of the following document images.

 

Wine Executive News subscribers.

 

Form 204 –  Unsecured Creditors

Unsecured1 unsecured2 unsecured3

Complete court filings for Wine Executive News premium Subscribers

  • Form 201 Chapter 11 Filing
  • Motion for Joint Administration of LLCs
  • Motion for Joint Administration of LLCs – Exhibit A
  • Motion for Joint Administration of LLCs – Exhibit B

Further reading (free links):