Nigerian tech company, Cellulant is expanding its operations to Asia as it is partnering with the Afghanistan Ministry of Agriculture on Agrikore, its e wallet solution. The company had in June this year arranged a $100 million loan for Nigerian farmers in partnership with a consortium of banks.
What farmers stand to gain
Farmers get access to fertilizer on time and at an affordable price. In schemes like this, farmers either get the fertilizer too late or at massively inflated prices. This then leads to poor yields, and impoverishes the farmers. For a country recovering from war, feeding its population will be a priority.
The Afghan government also benefits
Input schemes sponsored by the government are often inefficient with the products getting to the farmer too late, or at an inflated cost. The cellulant e wallet gives the government a bird’s eye view of its exact spending and the recipients of the fertilizer. Nigeria’s Ministry of Agriculture has also embraced the e wallet solution in its own fertiliser distribution programme. Afghanistan, just recovering from a war, has struggled with corruption in government spending. The Afghan government had earlier adopted a similar solution to pay its policemen.
Cellulant will earn revenue in dollars, which translates to massive gains when converted to Naira. Success of the scheme will give it to an inroad into other countries in the Asian continent, as well as more business in the country, thus diversifying its revenue stream from Nigeria, and other African countries.
Cellulant was founded by Ken Njoroge (a Kenyan) and Bolaji Akinboro (a Nigerian) in 2004. The company’s initial focus was providing music and news content through mobile for its customers in Kenya and Nigeria. In 2005, the company began to develop mobile money solutions, and in 2014 it was awarded a mobile payment license by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and partnered with the federal government on a mobile wallet scheme to supply farmers fertiliser. Cellulant currently provides services to over 10 million customers across several African countries including Liberia, Kenya, Zambia, Botswana and Ghana.