On Wednesday 3, 2021, Danish Ambassador to Kenya, H.E Ole Thonke, launched the AgriBiz call for applications in Isiolo. The event happened during a courtesy visit to Isiolo which brought together delegates from the Danish Embassy, Isiolo county government representatives and staff from Kenya Climate innovation Centre (KCIC) who are conducting the program in the country.
While addressing the participants at an exhibition, Ambassador Ole Thonke noted that Danida is on the frontline in supporting the growth of agribusiness enterprises to end poverty and feed a growing planet.
“Danida is working together with other relevant bodies to not only create an enabling environment for youth and women to explore business opportunities along the agricultural value chains, but also come up with trusted networks to fill the gaps in financing and resource needs,” he said.
He added that in partnership with KCIC and the County Government of Isiolo, the AgriBiz programme has already started training to equip women and youth with appropriate agribusiness skills.
“What happens at the farm level is important and farmers need access to knowledge and information that enhance productivity inputs and tools,” he said.
Isiolo County Governor, Dr. Abdi Kuti called upon the youth and women in the county to take advantage of the opportunities provided in the AgriBiz programme due to their potential to create massive wealth. “Agriculture is not a way of life or a social sector. Agriculture is a business that will help us diversify our economy, create jobs and revive our rural areas.”
Beneficiaries of the program will be provided with technical expertise and mentorship to help them scale up their ideas into viable businesses. In addition, they will be provided with a range of competitive financing ranging from Proof-of-Concept grants, seed capital investments and syndicates of larger financing.
One of the participants at the exhibition expressed his gratitude for the grand opportunity that AgriBiz is offering the youth and women in Isiolo. “I want to thank AgriBiz because they have come to help young people in the local area. Providing us with resources and information on growing our enterprises will help reduce the rate of unemployment, boost our economies and transform our lifestyles,” Amina Asha Mamo said.
In addition to financing the youth and women in the county will be provided with facilities such as office space and warehouses for training and knowledge exchange. This will be made possible through the establishment of a Business Incubation Hub (BIH) in the county that will help entrepreneurs in the agricultural value chain to grow their businesses to the next level.
KCIC Director of Clients Sevices Makena Mworia echoed that, “Agribusiness is one of the best business opportunities in the world because food never goes out of fashion. People must eat every day and as the economies continue to grow, the demand for raw materials will surely increase and create more interesting opportunities for agribusiness.”
The AgriBiz program is open to all micro or small business enterprises who are planning to startup or expand their business ventures in agriculture. Applications are now open and should be submitted online on agribiz.kenyacic.org/apply before 12th March, 2021.