The GSMA Innovation Fund for Digitisation of Agricultural Value Chains

The GSMA Innovation Fund for Digitisation of Agricultural Value Chains aims to scale digital solutions for the agricultural last mile and improve smallholders’ financial inclusion, livelihood and climate resilience.

We are excited to announce the following 7 organisations who have been awarded grants under our Innovation Fund via a competitive selection process: MTN Rwanda, MTN Ghana, Vodacom Tanzania, Jazz Pakistan, Dialog Sri Lanka, PT Koltiva (Indonesia) and Agromall (Nigeria).

Each of these 7 grantees have formed a consortium with key local agricultural stakeholders such as agribusinesses, financial service providers etc. to launch and/or scale solutions for agricultural value chains and smallholder farmers in their respective markets.

Data Driven category

Agromall, Nigeria. Key consortium partners: NIRSAL Microfinance Bank and Unity Bank.
The project will focus on rice, cassava and soya beans value chains. Agromall will also innovate in the area of digital finance services for smallholders such as savings, loans and crop insurance.
Koltiva, Indonesia. Key partners: Mars, Cargill, Sinarmas.
Koltiva is digitising cocoa and palm oil value chain with a focus on traceability. Koltiva will also innovate in the area of digital financial services, such as loans and insurance, as well as climate smart advisory for smallholders.

Mobile Money Driven category

Dialog Axiata PLC, Sri Lanka. Key consortium partners: Tea Research Institute, KDU Group, Agrithmic.
The project will focus on tea value chain. Dialog Sri-Lanka will also innovate in the area of commercial microwave links (CML) to support weather index insurance services in partnership with Sanasa Insurance.
Jazz, Pakistan. Key partners: Bakhabar Kissan and Ricult.
Jazz will focus on digitising a variety of value chains, including grain, vegetables, fruit, dairy etc. Jazz will also innovate in the area of digital agricultural loans for smallholders.
MTN MobileMoney Limited, Ghana.
The project will focus on digitising cocoa value chain. MTN MobileMoney will also innovate in the area of digital finance services for smallholders, including farmer-centric loans and pension.
MTN, Rwanda. Key partners: Sorwathe, Rwanda Mountain Tea and Karongi/Muganza.
MTN Rwanda will focus on digitising tea value chain. MTN Rwanda will also innovate in the area of digital agricultural loans and mobile based crop index insurance for smallholders.
Vodacom, Tanzania. Key partners: Alliance Ginneries, Tanga Dairy Co-operative Union (TDCU) and Silverlands.
Vodacom Tanzania will focus on digitising cotton, dairy and maize value chains. Vodacom Tanzania will also innovate in the area of digital finance services for smallholders, especially digital agricultural loans, climate smart advisory and PayGo solar for irrigation.

The Fund prioritises enterprise services targeted at organisations (e.g. agribusiness, cooperatives, etc.) procuring from smallholders with the focus on those living on less than USD 2 per day.  The specific objectives of The Fund are to:

  • Scale enterprise (B2B2C) solutions which digitise the agricultural last mile,
  • Increase adoption of mobile money in rural areas, with the focus on agriculture-dependent communities,
  • Promote farmer financial inclusion, livelihoods & climate resilience,
  • Promote partnerships in the agritech space, between mobile money providers, agritech companies and agribusinesses.

To achieve these ambitious objectives and de-risk innovation, the GSMA AgriTech programme has provided grants of £220,000 to each of the 7 grantees. In addition, over the next two years of engagement with each of the grantees, the GSMA will provide in-kind support and consultancy to assist the development of business plans, and service implementation through market research, user-centric design, business intelligence, monitoring and evaluation and user-testing with agribusiness staff and smallholders.

To provide this in-kind support GSMA has contracted two specialty consultancies. Altai Consulting will be leading on monitoring, evaluation & learning while design firms Cobalt and YUX will be providing user-centric research and product design

Grants are available across two categories of application:

MOBILE MONEY DRIVEN CATEGORY

MOBILE MONEY DRIVEN CATEGORY

Open to mobile money providers in partnership with AgriTech vendors who are developing, implementing, launching and/or scaling enterprise services (B2B2C) which digitise the agricultural last mile procurement and communication with smallholders.

The proposed development or evolution of an enterprise service must include the following primary use-cases:

  1. Digitising procurement records and smallholder farmer profiles (static and dynamic information);
  2. Digitising payments to smallholder farmers via mobile money;
  3. Digitising communication and providing advisory services for smallholder farmers.

DATA DRIVEN CATEGORY

DATA DRIVEN CATEGORY

Open to AgriTech organisations who have already scaled a last mile agriculture digitisation service and established a model for generating digital farmer records and explored linking farmer records with financial service providers.

The proposed evolution of these services must include the following primary use-cases:

  1. Digitising procurement records and smallholder farmer profiles (static and dynamic information) at a scale of at least 50,000 farmers in the proposed market;
  2. Using existing deployment data and digital records of smallholder farmers to provide financial inclusion services through partnerships with third-party organisations;
  3. Digitising communication and providing advisory services for smallholder farmers.

Applications for funding across both categories were assessed through a two-stage application process.  From 215 concept notes, 27 were invited to submit full business plan applications. The strongest 14 Business Plans advanced to the Fund Panel for careful consideration and 7 have been contracted.

Eligible applicants at Concept Note stage, irrespective of whether they received a grant under this Innovation Fund, have been invited to join the GSMA AgriTech Priority Learning Partners Initiative, where they will gain access to a number of knowledge sharing resources and events, including webinars on the topic of enterprise solutions for the last mile.  If you are interested in learning more about the AgriTech Priority Learning Partners Initiative, please contact us here.

To stay up to date with the progress of our Innovation Fund and to receive the latest insights and updates from the GSMA AgriTech programme, please subscribe to our quarterly newsletter.

THE GSMA INNOVATION FUND FOR DIGITISATION OF AGRICULTURAL VALUE CHAINS IS FUNDED BY THE UK FOREIGN, COMMONWEALTH & DEVELOPMENT OFFICE (FCDO), AND SUPPORTED BY THE GSMA AND ITS MEMBERS.
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