12 startups selected to participate in the third Village Capital FinTech for Agriculture: East
Africa accelerator programme, launched today. Two ventures to secure US$50,000 in
NAIROBI VillageCapital today launched its FinTech for Agriculture: East Africa 2015
accelerator programme at a launch event in Nairobi, revealing the cohort of 12 startups
selected to participate in the programme.
The three month accelerator programme aims to unlock innovations that increase access to
financial services for smallholder farmers. Village Capital has precommitted US$100,000 in
funding to be awarded to two companies in the cohort.
This year the Village Capital flagship accelerator programme returns to East Africa for the
third time; with over 125 applications received for the 2015 programme from nine African
countries. Village Capital’s investment committee selected the 12 most outstanding startups
on the basis of how their ideas have the potential to increase incomes for smallholder farmers
by improving their access to financial services.
The 12 startup firms selected to join the three month programme are:
- Atikus Insurance : Expands access to credit by increasing the capacity of MSME
lenders via reimagined insurance and technology risk solutions.
● Chamasoft: Web and mobile app to automate record keeping for investment groups.
● Ensibuuko : Builds ICT solutions to enable enterprises deliver financial services
efficiently and to scale rapidly, reaching underserved communities.
● FarmDrive: Transforming how smallholder farmers access financial services.
● Farmerline: Provides accurate and timely agricultural information to farmers and also
provides technology to stakeholders to work better.
Interactive platform for smallholder farmers and traders.
● Mobipay: Technology solutions to various economic sectors to drive commerce and
● nanoCredit Technologies: Lending and derisking
engines, providing structured
digital finance for small farms.
● Rangerland Solutions: Online livestock marketing platform that directly connects
buyers and sellers, reducing marketing costs.
● Redcore Interactive: remit.ug is a platform for online international money transfers to
mobile money in Africa.
● SmartMoney: Freeofcharge
branchless mobile banking to unbanked rural
communities in Uganda and Tanzania.
● YieldUganda: Sources high quality, traceable food products for local and export
As of today the chosen startups will commence the three month programme focusing on
business model canvassing, customer hypothesis testing, financial modeling, partnership and
customer development, and investor engagement. The cohort will present to potential
partners and customers at a pitch day, as well as pitch to investors at an investor demo day.
Village Capital has precommitted
US$100,000 in investment to be shared by two startups in
the cohort. The winners of the funding will be chosen by the accelerator participants at the
end of the programme in June. Each of the two selected companies will receive US$50,000
“Thanks to the pool of talented and innovative startups that applied for a place on our
programme from across East Africa, it was a challenging process to select the final 12. We
have been truly impressed with the quality of applications received this year,” John Mulqueen,
Financial Associate at Village Capital said, speaking at the launch event.
“We are very excited to get started with our programme, and get down to work. We look
forward to building and shaping the innovative solutions our startups are creating, and we
believe their work will truly unlock the value of East Africa’s agricultural sector,” Mulqueen
“The Village Capital Fintech for Agriculture programme is great for remit.ug because it
provides us and other entrepreneurs with an opportunity to grow, and to help a very critical
group of people the
financially underserved. We are excited about networking and sharing
with other entrepreneurs in the space who are facing the same challenges,” said Stone
Atwine, chief executive officer (CEO) and cofounder
of Recore International, one of the
“Through enabling smallholder farmers to use financial technologies, Africa’s agripotential
surely be unlocked. We at Mobipay are very excited to be involved in the Village Capital
programme, which will be a key player in realising Africa’s potential,” said Charles Kiinde,
founder of Mobipay.
Programme graduates are expected to increase their revenue growth by 4.5 times, and
distribute goods and/or services to 200,000 customers within the two years following
completion of the accelerator. Village Capital estimates the companies forming the cohort will
create 200 jobs over the next two years in East Africa, with an estimated 60% of jobs going to
individuals living below the poverty line.
The accelerator will see the 12 startups participate in three workshops to be held in Nairobi,
Kenya, on April 1518,
and June 2225.
The two startups to receive the funding
will be announced at the end of June.
About Village Capital
Village Capital sources, trains, and invests in earlystage
ventures solving major social
problems through profitable business solutions. We put investors facetoface
with the best
entrepreneurs in agriculture, energy, education, health, and financial inclusion, and in the last
five years, we have been the most active small business development organization
worldwide. Since 2009, our awardwinning
investment model has supported
450 ventures in 30 programs across 9 countries. Our alumni have created 6,000 jobs, served
6 million customers, and raised more than $100 million in followon
capital to scale their
businesses and impact, and 96% of our alumni would recommend our programs to other