Nigerian agri-tech company ThriveAgric has teamed up with Heifer International to launch the AYuTe Project. This project’s goal is to help 125,000 small-scale farmers gain access to financial services.
ThriveAgric, which was founded in 2017 and has been operating fully since 2018, empowers farmers in Nigeria to sell their products to fast-moving consumer goods companies and food processors. They do this by using their own technology to access financing, boost productivity, and increase sales, ultimately contributing to food security.
Their technology, referred to as an agricultural operating system, operates offline and sends text-based messages (USSD) to farmers. It also powers Android apps used by field agents to identify creditworthy farmers and collect important farm data.
ThriveAgric recently raised $56.4 million in debt funding in March 2022 from local banks and institutional investors. Now, they’ve joined forces with Heifer International to open bank accounts for 125,000 small-scale farmers across eight northern Nigerian states, including Adamawa, Gombe, Yobe, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, and Bauchi, over the next year.
Heifer International was founded by a farmer and for more than 75 years, the organisation has worked with people all around the world to end hunger and poverty and care for the Earth. They operate in nine different countries and seem to be making a move to add Nigeria to the list.
Ayodeji Arikawe, co-founder of ThriveAgric, explained, “At ThriveAgric, our driving force has always been to empower smallholder farmers for a dignified livelihood. By connecting smallholder farmers to the formal financial economy, we are positioning them for better access to finance, credit, digital services and introducing them to the formal economy which has numerous other benefits in the long run,”
He also said: “We are excited about this initiative we’re undertaking with Heifer International through the AYuTe Africa Challenge, and for the long term impact of this strategic partnership with VISA towards the creation of job opportunities, financial and social inclusion. Our unwavering commitment to positively impact smallholder farmers and their immediate communities across Africa will become even more evident through this project, as we power towards our goal of developing the largest network of profitable farmers in Africa.”