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Kosmos’ 2017 AgriTech Challenge makes progress

The young entrepreneurs have formulated modules to address some of the challenges inherent in the agricultural sector in the country.

The pitch is the first of three planned as part of the competition this year.

The first round of business plan pitches builds on market research activities in which the young entrepreneurs travelled throughout Ghana learning about the agricultural industry after which they attended an AgriTech exchange, a forum in which the upcoming entrepreneurs met and interacted with professionals working in the agribusiness value chain.

Pitching business plans

The KIC said in a statement that the first round of pitches would determine which business teams would advance to the second and final pitches in May and June, respectively.

The contesting teams in a brainstorming session

At the end of the project, it said, two best teams would win seed funding from the KIC and technical assistance from the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST).

“The teams will pitch their business ideas to a panel of experts selected by the Kosmos Innovation Centre, which has professionals from a range of sectors, including agribusiness, technology, finance, and academia,” the statement said.

Members of the expert panel also serve as advisors during the competition, helping the teams to refine ideas and proposals at various stages of the competition.

Each team will have five minutes to present their business plan, followed by five minutes of discussion with the expert panel who will be looking for the best and most viable ideas.

Areas of focus

The 16 teams are preparing business plans to address market needs in a range of areas, including livestock, poultry and fisheries management; on-farm production and post-harvest challenges; technical and market information for farmers and agricultural processes; finance and insurance; and the ability to track food sources and authenticate agricultural inputs.

The statement said KIC sought to use technology, innovation and the application of commercial solutions to solve development challenges in Ghana. KIC’s current focus is to nurture the development of innovative solutions that address the needs of the country’s agricultural sector, as well as create viable business opportunities led by young entrepreneurs.

Kosmos Country Manager 

Kosmos Energy’s Vice-president and Country Manager for Ghana, Joe Mensah, said: “This event is a key milestone in the competition. The Kosmos Innovation Centre has provided top-notch learning experiences, as well as training in presentation skills, finance, marketing, and technology.”

The young entrepreneurs touring a processing facility

He said the company’s goals were to provide participants with the skills they needed to be successful entrepreneurs and discover innovative new businesses.

“We can support with seed funding and technical assistance. Agriculture is an exciting market that offers these smart young entrepreneurs a lot of opportunity to launch their careers and make a difference,” he said.

Source: Graphic online

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