Best Projects 2022 features all the nominated entries submitted ‘Submit your Project’ category. All the entries consist of innovative projects run by existing enterprises in the form of businesses, NGOs, or informal programs.
Explain your project in details:
Bfarm-Tech is a startup Agri-Tech company based in Ethiopia. It is officially launched in January 2020 and started providing rental threshing services for smallholder farmers in Moretena Jiru Woreda, Amhara Region. Bfarm-Tech's main objective is to replace the traditional plowing and threshing methods in Ethiopia and make rental mechanization services available, accessible and affordable to enhance productivity, improve efficiency and reduce post-harvest loss, save farmers' time and energy. Farmers in Ethiopia lack mechanization services. The existing traditional threshing and plowing method take much energy, and time using animal feet for days. Nowadays, using mechanization services is growing. However, service providers lack information coordination and they are working near their village and most of them are Idle. Hence, more than 80% of the farmers consider accessing mechanization services inefficient, expensive, delayed, and unreliable. To alleviate these problems, Bfarm-Tech started developing a successful digital platform that includes easily installed and user-friendly mobile apps and a call center that connect farmers with mechanization with rental mechanized harvesting and threshing service providers in Ethiopia. Our digital platform will have a harvesting time prediction system so that machinery will be deployed based on the harvesting period in different regions. The system algorithm will determine the duration, logistics, and manpower required to accomplish a task in one region and deploy it to other places.
Impact of your enterprise on sustainable development
Bfarm-Tech is officially launched in January 2020 by investing $5,000 in seed capital raised from the Tony Elumelue Foundation and started providing rental threshing services for smallholder farmers in Moretena Jiru Woreda, Amhara Region. Bfarm-Tech has more than 500 customers and has generated a total of $USD 20,000 from threshing and other revenue sources yet. In January 2022, we purchased tractor powered thresher with 9,000USD and it has quadrupled our company's revenue and created 4 job opportunities. In June 2022, we invested $USD 11, 450 and started developing a digital platform (Mobile app and Call center) that links farmers with mechanization service providers in Ethiopia. Bfarm-Tech makes rental mechanization services available, accessible and affordable to enhance productivity improve efficiency and reduce post-harvest loss, save farmers' time and energy. Our business reduces farming time and enables farmers to plow, harvest, and store their farm produce in optimal periods of each season thereby increasing productivity and production volume. Our company delivers its social responsibilities by providing Mechanized Plowing and threshing services and gives priority to women headed and disabilities. Besides, we are providing the service at a lower price than other competitors in the province. By minimizing the time taken for mechanization service.
Sustainability and future plans
Bfarm-Tech is now in the first phase of its operation, the core business model is giving threshing or post-harvest services for local farmers with a $4.00(250 birr) service charge per quintal, this service enables us to serve small farm holders in the region. The second revenue is generated by connecting mechanized machinery owners to small farm holders. The second phase enables the organization to scale its operation. Bfarm-Tech plan to generate its revenue with a subscription fee from Sales and installation of hardware on tractors, Commission based on the rendered service, SaaS service charge of the tractor (Fleet Management Service), and revenue from the call center. We plan to generate 120, 000 USD revenue within 3 years of business operation. By digitalizing our farming system, we plan to deliver these solutions faster, cheaper, and more efficiently to smallholder farmers in ways that could not have been done before. In doing this, we will work in line with government policies and strategies. Our company is developing partnerships with cooperatives, the ministry of agriculture, ATA, GIZ, CIMMYT, etc.
Your profile as an entrepreneur
My name is Begashaw Meberate, the CEO and Founder of Bfarm-Tech. I am 39 years old from Ethiopia.My professional background is agriculture graduated with a degree of Master's in Rural Development Management from Bahir Dar University, Ethiopia. I have 15 years of proven experience in different organizations including the Agriculture Research Center, International Non-governmental (INGOs), and Private sectors in Ethiopia. I have a strong passion to make farming a profitable business by using advanced technologies with a burning desire to digitalize agro mechanization services and replace traditional methods and create a meaningful impact on small-scale farmers in Ethiopia.To realize my dream, I applied to the Tony Elumelue Foundation to learn more about entrepreneurship and raise seed capital to successfully start the business. Bfarm-tech has got awards/recognitions from various organizations which include: Startup incubation training and $3000 from Mastercard Foundation Selected and received machinery plus consultancy support worth 20,000 euros from the 2021 Jump Start Accelerator program. Completed the 12 weeks online entrepreneurship training program from Tony Elumelue Foundation, got certified, and awarded a $5000 seed grant in 2019 Completed Design Driven Entrepreneurship from the Young African Leadership Institute (YALI). A Certificate of Gradation for the 2021 X Hub Addis/CALS startup incubation program. A Certificate of Gradation for the 2021 X Hub Addis/CALS mentor development program. A Certificate of recognition from the Tony Elumelue Foundation for being a mentor in the 2021 program.