Agri-education platform eMkuyu wins AMPION Venture Bus Southern African leg

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Agri-education platform eMkuyu, which plans to offer online educational modules aimed at encouraging young unemployed people to go into farming, was yesterday declared the winner of the AMPION Venture Bus Southern African leg at a pitch event at the AHUB in Cape Town.

The final AMPION Venture Bus of the year – focused on hardware and agriculture – began last week, with the bus departing Windhoek, Namibia, and travelling through Botswana before concluding at the AHUB event in Cape Town.

Each tour is a seven-day full-immersion programme for developing entrepreneurial skills and creating new ventures in a team-based competition set on a bus. AMPION had already run three other Venture Bus competitions this year, in Morocco, West Africa and East Africa.

The 10 startups created on the final bus trip of the year pitched to a panel of judges at yesterday’s event, with eMkuyu declared the winner. The startup plans to offer educational content to youth unemployed in the region encouraging them to develop an interest in farming, and will help place them with farmers in need of their skills. It will make revenues through training and placement fees.

In second place was Agri2Go, an online platform allowing farmers to place SMS adverts for their produce, while third place was taken by SheFarms, an online information portal for farmers. All three winning startups – like those on the previous trips – will become part of the AMPION fellowship programme, gaining access to ongoing support.

The other seven startups born on the bus were water supply service Flow, crime mapping platform SafetyMaps, produce marketplace Kilimo, investor-farmer matchmaking service InVnture, drone farm surveillance startup SkEyeFarm, farmer’s marketplace Pulazi, and insurance startup Bull Protector.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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