Nigerian agri-tech startup Farmcrowdy has been selected for the Techstars Atlanta accelerator programme, which will over three months help entrepreneurs build their business network, receive individualised support and learn how to do more faster.
Techstars Atlanta – now in its second year – is run in partnership with Cox Enterprises and focuses on technologies driving positive change in an interconnected world. Members of the team visited Nigeria in March to meet with startups.
Of the 10 chosen startups, only one is African. Farmcrowdy matches small-scale farmers with farm sponsors for the purpose of expanding food production and generating profit for both parties. The platform allows Nigerians to participate in agriculture without necessarily having to farm themselves, with sponsors selecting a farm and providing it with backing for inputs.
Farmcrowdy chief executive officer (CEO) Onyeka Akumah said his team was excited about the opportunity to join the Techstars programme and was looking forward to learning more on how it could scale its efforts from the 1,000 currently engaged small-scale farmers to 10,000 in the next 12 months.
“We also hope to learn about building more relationships with key agriculture players in and outside Nigeria in addition to the ones we have while taking advantage of, and amplifying the government’s efforts to grow the agriculture space in Nigeria. With the knowledge acquired, Farmcrowdy can encourage more youths and middle class Nigerians to participate in agriculture while being ‘farmers without a farm’ for the purpose of creating impact and getting returns,” he said.
Only one of the other nine companies is from outside of the United States (US) – Latvian company TheMonetizr. Otherwise, the cohort is made up of eight American startups, including four from Atlanta itself. The companies are 2ULaundry, Bloveit, Collider Tech, Fraudmarc, Landing Lion, MoQuality, Rapid RMS, and Vlipsy.
“One of the goals of Techstars Atlanta is to help shine a light on our city as a hotbed for innovation,” said Techstars Atlanta’s managing director Michael Cohn.
“We’re doing this by accelerating great startups already based here, but also by bringing international entrepreneurs to Atlanta. With the support of Cox Enterprises, we’re able to connect them with one of the city’s leading corporations. It’s a winning combination.”
The programme kicks off with more than 1,000 hours of mentorship provided by the region’s leading subject matter experts, and ends with a demo day on October 10. Farmcrowdy will also receive funding as part of the programme.