Agriculture, from prehistoric time has been the biggest source of employment and livelihood for Africa and forms a significant portion of their economies. According to a recent study in 2019, around 60% of the Sub-Saharan populace are subsistence farmers and 23% of the sub-Saharan GDP comes from agriculture alone.
In 2019, Food and Agritech startups received venture capital funding of up to $63 million according to Digest Africa in a mixture of disclosed deals, in which majority were gotten from grants and debt finance.
Below is a roundup list of top innovative Food and Agritech ventures that have received funding in 2019, so relax and keep reading as we delve further into them.
Sidai Africa limited is an Agritech startup founded in 2011 by Christie Peacock. The startup produces sixteen of its own branded livestock products that it distributes to suppliers it partners with. And is also equipped with quality animal health products and provides professional technical advice to farmers and pastoralists. In 2019, Sidai raised $4 million from venture capital funding, with notable investors including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and AHL Venture Partners.
Agrocenta is a Ghanaian Agritech startup founded by Francis Obirikorang and Micheal K. Ocansey in 2015 to develop the agricultural value chain in Ghana by improving rural farmers access to market and finance. The young Agritech startup received a total of $1.15 million venture capital in 2019, after being crowned the global winner of the Seedstars World Competition and also received funding from the GMSA Ecosystem Accelerator.
Green Path food is a specialty startup that produces and distributes premium, organic food products through a network of small scale partner farms across Ethiopia and East Africa. In 2019 Green Path Food got up to $1 million in venture capital towards growing its operation and expansion to new sites. Notable investors include; Engineers Without Borders (EWB), Novastar Ventures and Oxfam’s Enterprise Development Programme.
Farmcrowdy is a Nigerian Agritech startup founded by Onyeka Akumah in 2016, which gives subsistence farmers across Nigeria access to finance sourced from individuals and corporates through its online funding platform. The provided finance comes with the promise of a share in the returns. In 2019 Farmcrowdy raised $1m in venture capital from international investors Cox Enterprises and Techstars, along with local investor Ajayi Solutions.
Self acclaimed Zambian Agritech startup, ‘Rent to own Zambia’ describes itself as a social business which provides small to medium scale farmers access to farming tools and assets (refrigerators, hammer mills and irrigation pumps) to help catalyze business farm production from underdeveloped and disadvantaged communities. Co-founded in 2010 by Mark Hemsworth and Patrun Chikolwizu, in 2019 Rent to Own Zambia raised $1.05 million in a seed round from AHL Venture Partners with participation from Small Foundation and Jordan Engineering.
In Africa, funding from investors into the Agricultural and Food startups is helping to enhance agricultural digitization and food production thereby helping in achieving digital inclusion, profitability and resilience to climate change. With the above list, now you know the top Agritech and Food startups who received venture capital funding in the year 2019.