An exclusive Tech Tribune Q&A with Carter Malloy (founder and CEO) of AcreTrader, which was honored in our:
- 2022 Best Tech Startups in Arkansas
- 2021 Best Tech Startups in Arkansas
- 2020 Best Tech Startups in Arkansas
- 2020 Best Tech Startups in Fayetteville
Tell us the origin story of AcreTrader – what problem were you trying to solve and why?
I founded AcreTrader after figuring out that farmland wasn’t as easy to engage with as I thought it was. I had spent a dozen years as a professional equity investor, but was really enjoying investing in land on the side. My dad has been in farming my whole life, so that knowledge and passion really helped me get up to speed. It wasn’t until my friends and colleagues started asking if they could invest in farmland too that I realized how complicated it could be to invest in it if you didn’t already know how. That’s when I became interested in building a marketplace that connects farmers and capital.
What was the biggest hurdle you encountered in your journey?
It was difficult to build trust with folks in the beginning, as it is in most fintech fields. People are trusting you with their hard-earned money and their livelihoods. We keep developing that trust by making sure investors have access to information on our website and through our team, and that we maintain exceptional transparency.
What does the future hold for AcreTrader?
We will soon be launching our cutting edge geospatial analytics tool for public use. People can use the tool to explore and value land across the US. The tool also has a bunch of layers so you can look at things like the history of your land, its soil layers, crop history, flood information, and we’re continuing to develop new layers. We’re excited to keep developing our mapping technology to equip everyone who is involved in land transactions.
What are your thoughts on the local tech startup scene in Arkansas?
It’s amazing to live in a place where there’s so much attention to tech development. Between Bentonville and Fayetteville, there’s a ton of attention on making this a place where tech thrives. There are a ton of talented people moving here to become a part of the tech scene, and I hope they continue to do so.
What’s your best advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Take your work seriously, but don’t take yourself too seriously.