Silent Herdsman bought by Afimilk

Silent Herdsman, the precision dairy farming systems specialist, has been acquired by an Israeli dairy technology business, Afimilk, for an undisclosed sum.

The Glasgow-based company was established in 2009 as a spin out business from the University of Strathclyde, with a licence to develop the Silent Herdsman cattle condition-based monitoring platform. This had been developed by Scottish Enterprise through its Intermediary Technology Institute (ITI) Techmedia with £4.75m funding over three years with the University and other institutions covering animal health and husbandry. The company is privately held with venture capital support.

The technology uses neck collar mounted accelerometers to monitor a cow’s feeding, rumination and movement activities andsend data to a central monitoring station to indicate cow health, productivity and reproductive cycling. This enables early indications of problems developing as well as the ideal times for service.

Afimilk was established on a kibbutz in 1977 to develop an electronic milk meter and built a global business supplying dairy management systems based in its meters and sensors. It is represented in the UK by Fullwood and two other engineering businesses

“Silent Herdsman complements Afimilk’s popular leg-mounted cow monitoring system, AfiAct II, which has unique functionality and powerful features based on new technology,” says Afimilk chief executive Yuval Rachmilevitz. “Afimilk has been a leader in leg pedometers since we released our first oestrus detection sensor in 1984. With Silent Herdsman, Afimilk will be the leading provider of head sensors as well.”

Drew Sloan, chief executive of Silent Herdsman, adds that the acquisition will benefit both new and existing Silent Herdsman customers. “We will bring the additional technological expertise and global capabilities of Afimilk to our customers. Silent Herdsman can now be integrated with other farm data to help farmers use the technology to its maximum benefit.”