DIGITAL INITIATIVE

IBM supports African agricultural start-ups through digital training

By making high-resolution weather data available to agricultural start-ups, DG4Ag is providing valuable information to small farmers

In Summary
  • The program will be undertaken through its Digital4Agriculture Initiative (D4Ag).
  • This project is designed to promote the start-up scene in the digital sector of developing and emerging countries together with (primarily) European technology companies.
Farmers plant using Irrihub techniques
Farmers plant using Irrihub techniques
Image: MELANIE MWANGI

IBM has announced plans to foster African start-ups in the agricultural sector and strengthen the living conditions of local small farmers through digital training.

The program will be undertaken through its Digital4Agriculture Initiative (D4Ag).

With the help of digital expertise from IBM Services and access to accurate weather data provided by IBM’s The Weather Company the initiative is helping over 36 African agricultural companies become better prepared for the digital future.

Reliable weather forecasts are very difficult to make for Africa’s agricultural industry due to IT infrastructure unavailability.

Small agricultural enterprises not only lack internet access and suitable hardware, but existing data is often unreliable or difficult to process.

By making high-resolution weather data available to agricultural start-ups, DG4Ag is providing valuable information to small farmers that can help them make important decisions with greater confidence.

"We want to help local start-ups to reach more customers and develop new markets. To this end, we provide them with basic knowledge in the areas of data analytics, interoperability and business modelling, said Desiree Winges, "consultant at Make-IT in Africa and responsible for D4Ag.

On behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) is implementing the D4Ag program within the framework of the project "Make-IT in Africa".

This project is designed to promote the start-up scene in the digital sector of developing and emerging countries together with (primarily) European technology companies, start-ups, associations, research & science and non-governmental organisations.

"Small farmers are the backbone of Africa's food supply and their success and quality of life depends upon having reliable weather forecast data and insights," said Florian Scheil, Account Executive Public Sector, IBM.