Village Capital has received 129 applications for its inaugural FinTech for Agriculture East African accelerator, with the company saying it is “very excited” by the application pool.
Disrupt Africa reported in January Village Capital opened applications for its FinTech for Agriculture accelerator in East Africa, with the programme aiming to unlock innovations which improve access to financial services for smallholder farmers.
12 applicants will be chosen to participate in the three month accelerator, with two startups to secure US$50,000 each in funding.
Village Capital told Disrupt Africa despite the specific focus of the programme – fintech for agriculture – 129 applications have been received, with the top 30 to 40 applicants “very strong”.
“From the beginning, we knew recruiting East African startups with such a specific focus, fintech for agriculture, would not be be easy,” John Mulqueen of Village Capital told Disrupt Africa.
“As the application window closes, we have over 125+ applications – with 75 per cent meeting our basic criteria. Furthermore, over 30 per cent of applicants are very strong startups with a proven revenue model who are currently raising capital.”
Mulqueen said the applicants are mostly from Nairobi, followed by a significant number from Kampala.
“We believe our success with the application pool point to two facts; that there are dozens of quality, for-profit companies creating viable businesses that use financial technology to serve East African smallholder farmers; and that there continues to be high demand amongst these startups for both early stage capital and technical assistance,” Mulqueen said.
“We’re very excited with the application pool and look forward to announcing our final 12 startups in mid-March.”
Applications for the accelerator close today.