Most Innovative Companies

Blue River Technology

In 2011, Blue River Technology founders Jorge Heraud and Lee Redden—both graduate students at Stanford—set off on a mission to “make farming more sustainable through robotics and computer vision.” Their first smart machine, Lettuce Bot, has been called a “Roomba for weeds” by Modern Farmer magazine, with the ability to identify and target weeds with help from a vast database of images and advanced computer vision technology. Blue River’s “see and spray” robots can be attached to tractors, where they can identify plants that need pesticides and fertilizer, which in turn makes the farming process more efficient. It’s no surprise, then, that Deere & Company, the folks behind the John Deere agricultural brand, scooped up Blue River for a reported $305 million last year.

2018: Robotics
2017: Robotics
headquarters: Sunnyvale, CA