In a bid to support digital transformation in Africa’s agribusiness sector, modernise supply chains and boost farmers’ productivity and incomes, Microsoft, through its 4Afrika initiative, and IFC have entered into a partnership to make digital tools and training resources more accessible to small-scale farmers, and agriculture-linked small businesses.
According to the country manager of Microsoft for Kenya, Mr. Kendi Nderitu, the partnership will leverage Microsoft 4Afrika’s unique digital platforms and IFC’s agribusiness leadership programme to help small-scale farmers, their cooperatives, and last mile retailers access information and digital tools to strengthen farming practices, build business professionalism and improve food security throughout the supply chain.
Nderitu, further informed that a mobile platform will be launched among farmers in Kenya, Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, and Uganda. The platform aims to support 50,000 farmers and at least 50 cooperatives.
“Digital technology can improve the operation of key supply chains in the food system through greater agricultural efficiencies, improved business practices, traceability, food safety and, access to finance. However, the use of digital tools in Africa’s agriculture sector remains limited, often because of infrastructure, affordability, awareness, and regulatory issues. Agribusiness contributes about 25 per cent of Africa’s GDP and 70 per cent of its employment. Now more than ever, we need to pay close attention to how agro-tech organisations transform digitally, what challenges they face acquiring new technologies, and the daily challenges they may be facing in the area of digital skills development.”
“Microsoft 4Afrika’s strategy is to invest in agro-tech to unlock Africa’s vibrant potential, accelerating innovation in agro-tech to enable data-driven farming that can optimise yields, boost farm productivity and increase profitability – all while feeding a nation.” Nigerian Tribune