Kenyan startups MCHE and Silo Africa emerge second and third at AFEX Code Cash Crop 4.0 Ag-hackathon

Kenyan startups MCHE and Silo Africa emerge second and third at AFEX Code Cash Crop 4.0 Ag-hackathon

Africa’s leading commodities market player hosted its fourth annual Ag-hackathon, Code Cash Crop 4.0, aimed at harnessing the intersection of technology, finance, and agriculture to create a platform for young tech enthusiasts to create viable solutions. 

This year’s edition drew participation from Kenya, for the first time, following AFEX’s operational expansion into the East African country last year. The grand finale, which was held in Lagos, Nigeria, over the weekend, produced three winners.

After a 2-day intensive boot camp, six finalists hailing from Kenya and Nigeria pitched their solutions at the grand finale to judges comprising of Jude Dike, Co-Founder of GetEquity; Hakeem Onasanya, Head of Startups at The Lagos State Employment Trust Fund; Nixon Gecheo, Senior Program Officer of AGRA and Funto Olasemo, VP Financial Markets at AFEX

Yakubu Temitope emerged as the overall winner, receiving the $10,000 ((approx. UGX37.1M, KSH1.5M, NGN7.6M) grand prize for his solution, Farm Central Intelligence, which seeks to develop an extensive database of agricultural information that can be accessed via a mobile app, WhatsApp chatbot, or a USSD platform.

In second and third place were Kenyan MCHE and Silo Africa, who received $5,000 (approx. UGX18.5M, KSH719,250, NGN3.8M) and USD$3,000 (approx. UGX11.1M, KSH431,550, NGN2.3M).

Themed ‘Scaling Market-led Solutions,’ this year’s Ag-hackathon, which received over 100 applications over a 3-month period, pulled together the most daring and innovative solutions that addressed gaps across data, logistics, and extension services for Africa’s agriculture value chain. 

These were narrowed down to the 25 best, for which boot camps were held across three African cities to select the finalists, who later converged in Lagos for the final boot camp and live-pitch sessions with judges. The criteria for selecting winners throughout the challenge were four main parameters: viability, profitability, scalability, and feasibility of each solution.

AFEX Nigeria President, Akinyinka Akintunde said; “With Code Cash Crop, we remain dogged in our mission to provide a platform for young talents to create custom-fit models for the everyday and emerging Agricultural market realities.”

“AFEX will continue to organize Code Cash Crop to empower more young people to think innovatively about Agriculture and deploy financial and mentorship resources to encourage them to transform Africa’s food systems through technological innovations.”

“This year, we have had the pleasure of reviewing thoughtful applications and engaging with extraordinarily bright minds. We are therefore proud to present our incredible mix of Nigerian and Kenyan winners as judged by our stellar panel.”

Code Cash Crop is an exciting industry event that harnesses innovation across the agriculture, finance, and technology sectors to solve problems related to Africa’s food systems. Through the annual challenge, AFEX empowers young tech talents and entrepreneurs in Nigeria and Kenya with the necessary resources to build profitable agric business models, thereby fulfilling its commitment to investing in the future of Africa.