Stepping closer to a share of $120,000 in seed funding prizes, training and other benefits, 25 young African agripreneurs have advanced to the “boot camp” final round of the African Development Bank’s AgriPitch competition.
The final round offers young entrepreneurs in Africa’s agricultural sector the opportunity to pitch their agribusiness proposals online to a panel of experts and investors who will select the winners.
AgriPitch organisers received more than 2,500 applications and evaluated 605 proposals from 30 countries. The finalists, from 12 African nations, submitted promising proposals that best embraced the 2020 theme of “Driving Sustainable Nutrition and Gender Inclusivity in Africa’s Agri-Food Systems: Youth Agripreneurs Seize the Decade.”
Finalists, all aged under 35, were selected under the competition’s “Start Up,” “Mature Business” and “Women-Empowered Business” categories.
AgriPitch is part of the African Development Bank’s fourth African Youth Agripreneurs Forum (AYAF) – one of the continent’s most exciting platforms for African youths in the agriculture start-up scene, which kicked off online on November 3 and runs through to the AgriPitch winners’ ceremony on November 17.
The finalists are now enrolled in the AYAF/AgriPitch online training platform, according to Edson Mpyisi, coordinator of the Bank’s Enable Youth Programme responsible for the event.
In collaboration with partners, including UN Women, the African Leaders for Nutrition and the Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa initiative, this year’s AYAF and AgriPitch competition shortlisted finalists from Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Benin Republic, Tanzania, Cameroon, Mozambique, Guinea, Malawi, Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire.
The finalists get automatic access to the AYAF webinar series. The general public can also register for the webinars, which feature speakers with expertise from across the development, nutrition, gender and agriculture sectors.
The AgriPitch finals and winners’ ceremony will be held on November 16 and 17. In addition to receiving seed funding prizes and post-competition mentoring, AgriPitch winners will be invited for the AYAF online DealRoom, which connects expansion-ready, youth-led African businesses with global investors.