Backed by local commercial banks and institutional investors, ThriveAgric raises $56.4 million to accelerate pan-African expansion plans
Founded in 2017 (and fully operational since 2018), ThriveAgric enables Nigerian farmers to sell their produce to FMCGs and food processors, leveraging its proprietary technology to access finance and improve productivity and sales to promote safety food. Farm Operating System (AOS) technology operates entirely offline, sending USSD to farmers and powering Android apps used by field agents to help digitally round up creditworthy farmers and collect relevant farm data.
This latest funding follows the $9 million the company raised in 2020. Over the past 12 months, ThriveAgric’s revenue has increased fivefold, with a 277% year-over-year increase in the number of farmers. The strong margin performance was driven by farmers using the company’s proprietary AOS product.
The company supports Africa’s agricultural sector by helping smallholder farmers produce high-quality grain. Crops, including corn, rice and soybeans, are stored in many of the company’s more than 450 warehouses in Bauchi, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano and Katsina states in Nigeria, before being unmarked and offered to local and global commercial markets at a premium price.
Commenting on the impact the funds will have, Managing Director Uka Eje said, “The new investment brings us one step closer to fulfilling our mission to build the largest network of profitable African farmers using technology to ensure the Food Safety. We look to the future with renewed confidence, knowing that our smallholder farmers will benefit even more financially from this new investment. Despite a volatile environment over the past few years, caused by the global pandemic, ThriveAgric has witnessed temporary disruptions to payments from our retail lenders. However, we overcame these challenges within a year and maintained the profitability of the business. Our strong financial performance underscores investor confidence in ThriveAgric.
“It is great to see that the market has overwhelmingly supported our farmers and that they are confident in the strategic decisions we have made. ThriveAgric has expanded its footprint to 20 states in Nigeria, and we look forward to a long period of growth as we continue to connect African farmers to capital, data-driven best practices, and access to local and global markets for their produce.
ThriveAgric-assisted farmers can charge premium rates for their produce, increasing their income by up to 25%. At the height of the global pandemic, business and supply disruptions prevented ThriveAgric from meeting its obligations to its subscribers, leading to the rapid appointment of key personnel including Olurotimi Arigbede, Chief Financial Officer and Michael Kadiri, responsible for risk management and compliance. As part of the strengthened management structure, the company settled all outstanding disputes with subscribers.