The Kosmos Innovation Center (KIC) has held a final pitch for the 2020 AgriTech Challenge competition.
The pitch which was held at the KIC business incubation hub is aimed at helping young entrepreneurs build the foundation for commercially-viable AgriTech start-ups and address challenges confronting the Agric sector in the country.
Ten business startups, namely FarmAsyst, Fruitflour, Kiayayo, Bolstaar, Kaltivo, Faakolore, Feed Haven, Kuanijom, and OASAL pitched their business ideas to a panel of judges known in the competition as the Ideation Team.
The 10 startups qualified from the first and second business pitches held in December 2020 and February 2021 respectively. They were shortlisted from twenty-three business teams who equally pitched their business ideas for the 2020 AgriTech Challenge competition.
Speaking at the ceremony, Senior Vice President and Head of Ghana Business Unit of the Kosmos Energy Ghana, Mr Joe Mensah, said considering all the challenges brought by covid-19, the KIC business startups have been resilient and determined, in as much as working on their products is concerned.
“Some of the start-ups that graduated from the programme have served and continue to serve thousands of Ghanaian farmers with innovative products. They have developed competitive products that are capable of transforming Africa’s agricultural sector,’ he said.
He said Kosmos Energy has spent over five million dollars on KIC and its related activities since 2016 to date, pointing out that through the programme, KIC has raised and incubated over 16 start-ups in Ghana.
He hinted that the Mastercard Foundation has shown interest to partner KIC to create more opportunities for African youth, hence encouraging young entrepreneurs to find innovative ways to sell their ideas.
The Director of the Kosmos Innovation Center, Benjamin Gyan-Kesse, said the goal of KIC is to create businesses led by young people and to support small and medium sized enterprises to scale up and become sustainable. He added, “These business startups have been resourced enough to run their businesses as expected and I believe they will do well in the AgriTech space”.
Kosmos Innovation Center
The Kosmos Innovation center is a not-for-profit organisation that invests and supports young entrepreneurs and small businesses with viable ideas in the agriculture value chain.
It trains and build capacities through the Agritech Challenge programme, incubate and support businesses through the KIC incubator and accelerates small businesses for investor readiness through the KIC Business Booster.
Since the inception of the programme in 2016, four cohorts (AgriTechies or teams) have gone through the KIC AgriTech Challenge.
At the end of the competition, two startups will be selected out of the 10 teams (AgriTechies) to receive seed funding amount of US$50,000 each and one-year full incubation with mentoring and coaching at the KIC hub.
The 2020 AgriTech Challenge began in December 2019 with 150 young entrepreneurs selected from over 1,000 candidates who applied for the programme.