Emata has raised a US$2.4 million seed funding round to expand its offering across East Africa. This reduces cost and enables lending to smallholders at rates 5x more affordable than the informal loans they have often relied on to date.
The startup has digitised the full lending process and is embedded in the agricultural value chain via its partnerships with cooperatives and farmer-based organisations.
The US$2.4 million raise, which comprises US$800,000 in equity and US$1.6 million in on-lending capital, was backed by African Renaissance Partners, Norrsken Accelerator, Zephyr Acorn, Swedish angel investor Marcus Boström, and the Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation.
Proceeds will be used to expand Emata’s agri-loan offering across East Africa within its debut market of Uganda and via imminent international expansion, most likely in Tanzania. It will focus on scaling its core markets – dairy and coffee. A multi-crop company from inception, Emata’s other operations are oilseeds and maize, whilst expansion is also anticipated into potatoes.
Bram van den Bosch, Emata founder and CEO, said: “We are thrilled to complete our US$2.4 million seed fundraise, backed by high-profile, impact-oriented investors who recognise the huge potential of digital agri-loans in East Africa, and beyond. Emata dares farmers to dream big and eliminates traditional obstacles that have made agricultural finance unavailable for the vast majority. Our solution turns a lifelong struggle into a five-minute process, already tangibly impacting thousands of East African farmers.