Pan-African FinTech Company Transforming Lives of 150,000 Liberian Farmers
Nairobi, Monday April 11, 2016… In a precedented move towards transforming the agriculture sector in Africa, Cellulant, a Pan-African FinTech company that provides mobile payments solutions & digital commerce services is extending its eWallet solution to Liberian farmers. This technology forms a critical component of the Liberia Agricultural Transformation Agenda (LATA). Within the next six months, Cellulant will be developing an innovative farmer e-registration platform which provides a holistic system to link farmers and agro-dealers to agricultural inputs supply chain, finance and market places. This technology has been proven in Nigeria where 14.5million farmers and 2500 agribusiness are participating via their mobile phones in an agriCommerce market place. The same technology will transform Liberia’s agricultural sector into a viable agri-business.
During the announcement of the Agriculture Transformation Agenda in October 2015, Dr. Akinwumi A. Adesina, president of the AfDB, commented; “We at the African Development Bank have a clear vision and an ambitious agenda. We are ready to move Africa to the top of the Agriculture value chain; technology is one of the key enablers that will get us there fast and cost effectively. Partnerships with like-minded technology companies on the continent are instrumental to achieving our vision and agenda.”
The eWallet is a tool that has shown and continues to show great promise as the key driver of inclusive growth in Africa.The technology is essentially expanding access to financial services, agricultural inputs, e-extension and markets in the agricultural sector to smallholder farmers via their mobile phones. This is accomplish this by integrating into mobile networks, financial services providers, market and trading networks and mobile payment systems. The expectation is that eventually there will be integration into third party databases for cross-referencing and monitoring purposes. The platform will track farmers’ activities and as a result will help address livelihood and business risks by linking them to service providers along the value chain in order to achieve higher economic returns to land, labor, capital and ecosystem service investments.
In the coming months, Cellulant will be setting up a system based on building a database of small holder farmers, geographical and financial institutions mapping, and building an ICT infrastructure that would connect all the relevant stakeholders. Thereafter, the system will be able to deliver agro-inputs to farmers while building capacity for both the farmers, the government and other stakeholders to maintain the system. Before the next planting season is over, 150,000 Liberian farmers will be registered into the ecosystem.
Through an international procurement exercise, Cellulant, headquartered in Nairobi, won the contract beating 17 global companies that were bidding in 2015. “We are excited to be partnering with the Government of Liberia and the African Development bank. This collaboration will provide a solution to millions of Africans who depend on the agriculture sector for their livelihoods,” said Ken Njoroge & Bolaji Akinboro, Co-founders of Cellulant. “We believe that the digital revolution in Africa supports an outside the box thinking that can build infrastructure on payments and easy access to services that can be scaled with speed. Additionally, programs such as the Agricultural Transformation Agenda are clear examples that social return on investment can play a role in the growth in the continent where current and future generations can be part of the transformation of millions of lives.”