Nigerian Agritech Startup Recognized For Innovative Mobile App

Written by Peter Pedroncelli

Nigerian agritech startup, Farmcrowdy, received a continental award in recognition of the platform’s innovative app that benefits the agricultural sector in Africa.

The startup was named Best Agritech Solution for 2018 at the AppsAfrica Innovation Awards held in Cape Town, South Africa this week, according to AppsAfrica.

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Farmcrowdy provides a platform that connects working class people as farm sponsors with farmers in order to increase food production while promoting youth participation in the agricultural sector. The startup also provides insurance cover for farmers while helping to boost investment in farming, which enables food security and job creation.

The award, which attracted entries from 39 countries across the continent, recognizes Farmcrowdy among many agritech startups providing solutions to challenges that have traditionally held the farming industry back.

As Africa’s most dominant economic sector, agriculture accounts for 15 percent of the continent’s GDP, or over $100 billion annually, according to McKinsey.

An estimated 70 percent of Africa’s people depend directly on agriculture for their livelihood, FT reports.

Nigerian agritech startup
Farmcrowdy staff and Farm Sponsors during recent trip to Poultry Farm in Ifo, Ogun State, Nigeria. Image – Farmcrowdy

Farmcrowdy has raised $1.4 million dollars in seed funding from local and international investors including Cox Enterprises, Social Capital, Techstars Ventures, according to Techcrunch.

It also won a $325,000 grant from the GSMA Ecosystem Accelerator Innovator Fund in February this year, Techpoint. reports.

Nigerian agritech startup empowering farmers

Much of that funding has gone towards assisting Farmcrowdy to scale its business across the country, with the startup now operating in 10 Nigerian states, with plans for expansion into further regions within the country, as well as across borders into other African nations.

This week Nigeria’s leading digital agriculture platform announced the launch of Nigeria’s first annual National Digital Agriculture Day as part of celebrations marking the startup’s second year of operations, according to a press release.

Registered by the startup with the Ministry of Trademark and Patent, National Digital Agriculture Day will serve to highlight the essential role that agriculture plays in building and maintaining a strong economy.

In its two years of operation, Farmcrowdy has empowered more than 7,000 farmers while providing thousands of Nigerians with a digital way to become involved in agriculture through sponsorship, with profits paid at harvest time.

This has translated to over 8,000 acres of farmland being used to plant maize, rice and cassava, with over 600,000 chickens raised during these two years, according to Techmoran.

In July, Farmcrowdy received the Digital Business of the Year award in Africa in recognition of the platform’s efforts to empower the agricultural community through tech.

The digital agriculture platform accepted the award at the annual Global African Business Awards (GABA) ceremony in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, according to a press release.

Launched in 2017, the U.K.-based and corporate-sponsored annual business awards were created to celebrate, honour and generate public recognition of the achievements and positive contributions of African organizations and entrepreneurs.

In winning the Digital Business of the Year prize, Farmcrowdy topped a selection of African tech firms, including e-commerce platforms Konga, Jumia, Zando, Dressmeoutlet, Mall for Africa and Dealdey, fellow agritech platform, WeFarm, fintech nominee, Interswitch Payment Gateway; and, South Africa’s branding and refinement partners.