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2018 AgriTech Challenge: KIC hopeful challenge will motivate youth

Programmes Manager of the Kosmos Innovation Center believes that the drive of the center to motivate the country’s youth to venture into agribusiness through the Agritech Challenge would prove successful in the long term in drawing young people into the sector.

Mr. Benjamin Gyan Kese in an interview with Rite news asserted that the challenge which is to draw young people into the wide range of opportunities in the field of agribusiness will prove successful if the teams got the necessary assistance from various players in the agribusiness value chain.

The Kosmos Innovation Center nurtures promising start-up companies through formal competitions focused on innovation while challenging young entrepreneurs to use technology to develop commercially viable solutions to development challenges within the chosen sector.

The Center is Kosmos Energy’s flagship social investment program in Ghana. It uses innovation to create and apply commercial solutions to development challenges, starting with agriculture and so far, six agribusiness startups have been supported over the past three years.

The KIC facilitates the ability of young entrepreneurs, mostly start-ups created out of the challenge, to create and apply commercial solutions to development challenges in the country, starting with agriculture.

The programmes manager while expressing satisfaction at the innovations of the various teams over the years was convinced that the cardinal aims of the agritech challenge by the Kosmos Innovation Center which is to help develop Ghana’s agribusiness strive, were gradually being achieved.

Mr. Kese who was hopeful that the successful teams could succeed if they get the necessary assistance from various stakeholders said the prize money of $ 50,000 would go a long way in helping the winning teams develop their business concepts to sustain the teams and Ghana as a nation.

Several deep innovations, Mr. Gyan indicated have come up since the beginning of the challenge in 2016 with viable innovations being presented by the various teams each year.

A lot businesses have failed to conduct the necessary research before venturing into various businesses, Mr. Gyan asserted adding that proper research was essential for determining the viability or otherwise of such businesses.

On October 11, the eight final teams in the Kosmos Innovation Center 2018 AgriTech Challenge will pitch to judges to be selected as overall winner.

The winning team, selected from over 500 applicants and over 100 initial program participants, will receive $50,000 seed-funding to start their business.

The AgriTech Challenge tasks young entrepreneurs with developing innovative, technology-led business ideas to solve problems in Ghana’s agricultural sector.

Over the past nine months, participants have benefited from training including 20 workshops, two group market research tours, and an individual team led market research activity to help them refine their minimum viable product

For the past two months, the teams have been working on their minimum viable product and proof of concept; required as part of the final pitch to demonstrate their product can be built and works for potential end-users.

Background

Kosmos is an independent oil and gas exploration and production company focused on frontier and emerging markets along the Atlantic Margin.

It has production and development projects offshore Ghana and Equatorial Guinea and large discoveries offshore Mauritania and Senegal. It also has exploration licences with significant hydrocarbon potential offshore Suriname, Sao Tome and Principe, Equatorial Guinea, Morocco and Western Sahara.

The company’s business principles articulate its commitment to transparency, ethics, human rights, safety and the environment.

Source: ritefmonline.org

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