African agritech innovators from all four corners of the continent claimed victory in the eight edition of Pitch AgriHack. The 2022 competition saw a 30% increase in completed applications with entries rolling in from 37 African countries.
Representing Egypt and Tunisia in the north, Zimbabwe in the south, Ghana and Nigeria in the west, and Kenya in the east, six youth-led agribusinesses have been awarded their share of $45,000 to invest in the growth of their ventures.
The winners had a chance to present their businesses to delegates at the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) where they participated in Africa’s biggest agribusiness match-making platform, the AGRF Agribusiness Dealroom.
Over 800 companies, 15 government delegations and 150 public and private investors convened at the deal room to generate exciting new opportunities.
“Pitch AgriHack is about creating impact through investment in the young agritech entrepreneurs of Africa,” said Mumbi Maina, Agribusiness Dealroom lead at AGRA. “Beyond the prize money, we seek to catalyse relationships between our finalists and future collaborators and investors. These are the relationships that will revolutionise the food system.”
Competing in three open competition categories – early-stage, mature- or growth-stage, and women-led – the Pitch AgriHack winners and runners-up were allocated cash prizes of $10,000 and $5,000, respectively. A fourth invite-only category known as the AYuTe Africa Challenge, an initiative of Heifer International, will award grants up to $1.5 million later this year to scalable ventures that are already generating measurable impact for Africa’s smallholder farmers.
The complete list of Pitch AgriHack 2022 winners are:
- Winner: Imen Hbiri of RoboCare in Tunisia. Robocare’s patented multispectral disease detector is minimizing pesticides and boosting efficiency by helping greenhouse farmers in Tunisia catch and treat infections long before human eyes can even see it.
- Runner-up: Donald Mudenge of Mbeu Yedu in Zimbabwe. Mbeu Yedu understands that seeds are currency. Their platform digitises Community Seed Banks to give smallholder farmers access to greater seed-varieties, accurate planting information, agri-fintech products, value-added services, and buyers.
Mature and growth-stage winners of Pitch AgriHack
- Winner: Hamis El Gabry of Mozare3 in Egypt. Mozare3 is an agri-fintech company that connects small farmers in Egypt to the agriculture supply chain. Their model combines contract farming, agronomic support, financing and market access to increase yields and income.
- Runner-up: Allan Coredo of FarmIT in Kenya. FarmIT innovatively combines crop mapping and market linkages to help Kenya’s vegetable farmers. They use satellite imaging, analytics, and AI to provide simplified agronomic advice, and link farmers confidently with big buyers with accurate yields predictions.
Women-led agribusiness winners
- Winner: Esther Kimani of Farmer LifeLine Technologies in Kenya. Farmer LifeLine helps Kenyan farmers to get ahead of pests and pathogens with a proprietary disease detection device that leverages solar-powered cameras, Artificial Intelligence, Data Analytics, and Machine Learning.
- Runner-up: Anaporka Adazabra of Farmio in Ghana. With their Smart Greenhouse package, Farmio guarantees a 120% increase in productivity for Ghana’s farmers. Their SuperApp connects growers with investors, buyers, consumers, agri-experts, and service providers.
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