By Daniel Dada
A Nigeria’s agro-tech start-up, RiceAfrika.com alongside 16 other start-ups, has won the Circulars Accelerator Cohort 2022 award by the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos Switzerland.
The Circulars Accelerator is an action-oriented, six-month accelerator programme for circular economy innovators.
Members benefit from one-on-one mentorship along with workshops and coaching modules to support them in scaling their businesses. They also get access to the WEF UplLnk platform and opportunities to engage with investors, a statement from the organisers said.
The 17 start-ups selected from nearly 400 applicants are among the most innovative making an impact in the world from 74 countries that participated in months of interviews, pitches and the selection process.
Over $32 million was raised by start-ups in the cohort of 2021 between January and June 2021.
RiceAfrika.com uses technology to boost local rice and wheat production by improving the capacity of local rice and wheat farmers in Nigeria through the deployment of its IoT-enabled, eco-friendly harvester machines, precision farming solutions and guaranteed off-take of produce at the farm gate.
Founder of RiceAfrika, Ibrahim Maigari Ahmadu, said: ‘’It is truly a honour for us to be selected, and be among these amazingly creative innovators in the cohort of 2022. Even though these are early days for our humble objective of moving rural rice and wheat farmers in Nigeria from manual harvesting to mechanical, we are excited about this global recognition.’’
RiceAfrika’s Country Head, Nigeria, Ifeoluwa Olatunji, also said it was an amazing opportunity for the firm to learn and network with circular economy industry leaders and investors as it scaled up its operations to other parts of Africa.