Afriagrimark: How small-scale farmers in Africa get items to market by means of a novel platform


Now that the Cisco International Downside Solver Problem 2022 winners have been formally introduced, you’ll need to study extra about every profitable staff and the story behind every innovation. The Cisco International Downside Solver Problem is a web based competitors that awards money prizes to early-stage tech entrepreneurs fixing the world’s hardest issues. Since 2017, the competitors has awarded $3.25 million USD to 78 start-ups from 25 international locations.

We’re excited so that you can study extra concerning the 2022 profitable groups addressing among the largest challenges we face by means of technology-based options.

Afriagrimark logoOn this weblog, we spotlight Afriagrimark, winner of the 2022 International Downside Solver Problem Individuals’s Selection Award value $10,000 USD. Voted as a winner by the general public, Afriagrimark’s mission is to revolutionize the agricultural pathway from farmer to provider to vendor in Kenya.

Founder Bonface Nyalwal and his staff have a ardour for locating actual options to actual issues. They begin with the challenges that their group faces and ask inquiries to get to the foundation of the difficulty. With this exploration, they’ve constructed a platform to revolutionize probably the most urgent points going through small-scale farmers in Africa – reliably and with-scale getting items to market.

What drawback is your expertise resolution making an attempt to resolve?

Bonface: Throughout Africa, there are 33 million small-scale farmers with no market with aggressive costs. They have to promote to middlemen who undercut their costs whereas making higher margins themselves. This example retains the farmers under the poverty line. Afriagrimark goals to offer higher entry to aggressive markets for farmers, suppliers, and distributors.

Are you able to clarify how the answer works?

Bonface Nyalwal
Afriagrimark founder Bonface Nyalwal

Bonface: The expertise has three segments:

  1. Farmer’s module
  2. Driver’s module
  3. Vendor’s module

These three segments create a transparent line from farmers to logistics to distributors. Among the many farmers, we’ve got recruited native brokers skilled to grasp the standard assurance course of and expertise utilization to coach these adopting the answer. These brokers assist farmers enroll on the platform, checklist their produce, and supply ongoing help in order that they’ll deploy finest practices for farming and post-handling. As soon as produce is listed, the distributors who purchase on-platform in city markets can place their orders on-line. Afriagrimark’s inner employees is notified of incoming orders, verifies them, and aggregates the online quantity of produce wanted from farmers to satisfy the order. The aggregation takes place in order that the order quantity is economically viable for the farmer to ship out. Subsequent, the closest driver will get a notification and the agent on the bottom brings the aggregated quantity to them. The driving force completes an extra spherical of high quality inspection, after which indicators off to start cargo. This motion sends a notification to all three events — farmer, driver, and vendor — and may observe order progress. The driving force then delivers to every vendor who has positioned an order.

What’s progressive about the best way you might be fixing the difficulty? What units your resolution aside?

Bonface: We have now recognized the necessity to rethink the worth of small-scale farmers throughout Africa. Migrating the standard market and bringing it right into a digital platform is the premise of our innovation. Until we alter the system in order that small-scale farmers can produce sufficient worth to take part available in the market, their financial circumstances is not going to enhance. Our expertise makes use of a geodatabase to map farmers so we all know precisely the place they’re positioned; with this, we will observe what number of farmers are by which areas and what quantity they’re producing of which items. This manner, our operations lower the price of the intermediary who overcharges the farmer. Over time, we hope to embed machine studying along with GIS to effectively observe information and synchronize it throughout events. Our future innovation lies in information.

What impressed you to develop this resolution?

People using the Afriagrimark app
Afriagrimark app demo session

Bonface: My ardour for agriculture stems from my household. My mom, who lived in an city space, was a vegetable vendor, and my father, who lived in a rural space, was a trainer and farmer. Their most typical complaints have been across the high quality and quantity of products on the market. Once I was younger, I didn’t fairly perceive what they meant. Over time, I spotted that my father was not producing a excessive sufficient quantity of high-quality items to economically justify shifting his yield to my mom who would take it to market.

As my staff and I spoke to different farmers and distributors, we understood precisely which factors alongside the provision chain trigger probably the most avoidable points. Understanding the foundation of the issue, I made a decision to construct a digital platform for farmers like my father to promote high quality produce at ample, economically justifiable volumes to provide distributors.

How will profitable a prize within the Cisco International Downside Solver Problem make it easier to advance your small business?

Bonface: My staff’s greater dream is to construct a wider infrastructure in Africa. We search to concentrate to the worldwide group’s issues and customise our options. Engaged on the Cisco International Downside Solver Problem from trainings to pitching helped us refine what our enterprise seems to be like in a buyer context.

Agriculture is a large market that requires partnerships and collaborations, and now Cisco performs an element in that journey. We should rebuild the inspiration required to propel the agricultural sector into an environment friendly and moral future. This will solely be completed if increasingly firms come collectively to help this imaginative and prescient for small-scale companies.

Have you learnt what you’ll use the prize cash for particularly?

Bonface: The very first thing we search is to onboard extra distributors onto the platform. With extra distributors, we will help extra farmers on the platform. Second, we’ll work to construct our inner capability and proceed to construct a well-informed, outfitted staff that may help scale. 

What recommendation do you might have for different social entrepreneurs?

Bonface: It is vitally vital to essentially, really discover what the issue is. Generally, we are saying that one thing is an issue through assumptions, and that drawback might not really exist. Ask folks and discover out what their actual issues are – don’t tackle simply the signs, however slightly the reason for the illness.

As social entrepreneurs, we additionally want to grasp that each market has its personal, distinctive context. For instance, within the case of Afriagrimark, Africa has a novel market and prospects. It’s important to prepare the purchasers accordingly to have the data base to help your merchandise upfront. We can’t assume {that a} market will instantly study and deploy; we have to assist the market perceive and undertake your product.

Lastly, to founders, self-discipline is the toughest a part of the journey. At all times concentrate on the ‘why’ and on the group you might be serving. Keep within the recreation irrespective of how laborious it’s and construct a staff that may take the dream additional.

Keep tuned for extra articles in our weblog sequence, that includes interviews with each Cisco International Downside Solver Problem 2022 profitable staff!



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