If you are an African or a friend of Africa, you must have heard several information about opportunities in Africa’s agriculture industry or access them personally. From rural to urban agriculture practices, you are also likely to come across various issues or challenges being faced by the practitioners of these forms of agriculture on the continent.
No doubt, you have heard, read and seen how some Africans and non-Africans have developed innovative solutions and products, addressing some of the challenges. Despite that, many issues and challenges are still preventing the continent from capturing inherent values in the industry, indicating that more initiatives and solutions need to be developed and nurtured sustainably.
Farmkonnect, an agricultural real estate company, emerged and joined other Agritech companies in Nigeria some years ago with the strategic intent of contributing to food security, elevation of livelihood of smallholder farmers and investors through alternative source of income [multiple source of income has been argued by some social and public analysts in the industry].
Farmkonnect’s value creation to farmers and other stakeholders within the supply side of the agricultural value chain in Africa is better understood from the perspective of enhancing farming conditions and outputs of farmers by providing innovative services with a view to facilitating better operational conditions, equipment as well as an effective distribution of farm produce.
Its approach to planning and executing agricultural projects and products has been linked with Sankofa Innovation, a concept developed by Professor Ndubuisi Ekekwe.
Enabling Value Co-Creation and Capturing in Africa’s Data-Driven Agriculture
As noted earlier, the challenges in the industry still need further exploration from an entrepreneurial perspective. This can be pursued from different angles. Creating new initiatives, solutions or products towards solving challenges in farming practice and marketing could be done through intra-entrepreneurship or independent-window approaches.
Our analyst notes that using intra-entrepreneurship approach indicates establishment of a strategic business unit by an established business for the purpose of creating value for the categories of stakeholders and clients identified as potential users of the initiatives, solutions or products. Independent-window entails outside creation of a new business that solves identified problems or needs.
With the creation of Farmkonnect Institute for Data and Agribusiness Studies, which would be launched on April 8, 2021 by the Management of Farmkonnect, the company has followed an intra-entrepreneurship approach. In the earlier analysis, our analyst had noted how the company intends to enlive computational agriculture in Africa.
Examination of the FIDAS’ website by our analyst reveals that there are two categories of solutions. These include school and enterprise. In-depth analysis shows that FIDAS is coming to the education and knowledge development spaces of Africa’s agriculture with courses developed using theoretical and practical principles. These courses strategically address issues and needs of smallholder and corporate farmers without neglecting what upcoming professionals in the industry need to acquire to be competitive and relevant in the future farming practice.
For instance, some courses are developed to cater for issues and needs within agricultural production, management and harvesting in Africa. Our analyst also found that some courses are developed to help beneficiaries from the private and public sectors understand the underlying principles in people, process and product management using emerging technologies and tools without jeopardising the chance of using local knowledge and initiatives.
When a unit in a company has these and others for the growth of the industry, our analyst notes that the unit and the company [Farmkonnect] need everyone’s support in terms of being a co-learner or a recommender of what they represent and intend to do. This support has strategic implications on attainment of Sustainable Development Goal 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 12 and 15.