- Together, the three countries account for over 60 per cent of agri-tech startups active in Africa.
- Currently, Kenya and Nigeria tie in first place as the top two agri-tech markets on the continent; while Ghana comes third.
- The total amount of funding raised in 2017 grew by over 121 per cent compared to 2016.
The African agri-tech space is booming, with Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana leading the pack and accounting for over 60 per cent of startups that are active on the continent, a new report shows.
The report by Africa’s start-up portal, Disrupt Africa, that tracks annual start-up activity in the agri-tech space, shows that currently, Kenya and Nigeria tie in first place as the top two agri-tech markets on the continent; while Ghana comes third.
Together, the three countries account for over 60 per cent of agri-tech startups active in Africa.
“The scope for innovation in the agricultural sphere is vast – a refreshed take on the sector could unlock huge value for the whole of Africa. That’s why this report is so exciting – it shines a light on the extent to which the continent’s entrepreneurs are already disrupting the agricultural industry. Behind the scenes, there has been formidable acceleration in the agri-tech market recently, and it is one of the most interesting spaces to watch in Africa today,” said Gabriella Mulligan, co-founder of Disrupt Africa.
The report shows that the Kenyan agri-tech startups were able to raise over Sh1.37 billion ($13.7 million) between 2015 and 2017.
The report however, shows that while Kenya was the early pioneer of the African agri-tech sector, accelerating interest in West Africa over the past two years means this region now dominates the market; and is home to two of the top three agri-tech ecosystems on the continent.
“Everyone knows how important the agricultural sector is across Africa, but until very recently it remained relatively untouched by tech innovators. That is suddenly changing as entrepreneurs and investors realise the scale of the challenges facing farmers, and spot opportunities to reach huge addressable markets. Our latest report tells you all you need to know if you want to get involved in this still very nascent space,” said Tom Jackson, Disrupt Africa co-founder.
According to the report, there were 82 agri-tech start-ups in operation across Africa by January 2018. Out of these, 52 per cent were launched in the past two years.
Startups are particularly involved in applying e-commerce to the agriculture industry, with this type of agri-focused e-commerce platform accounting for 32.9 per cent of startups. A substantial number of entrepreneurs are focused on delivering fintech solutions for farmers.
Over the course of this period, over $19 million (Sh1.9 billion) has been invested in African agri-tech startups, with annual fundraising figures growing rapidly.
The total amount of funding raised in 2017 grew by over 121 per cent compared to 2016.