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CTA to showcase and support young agribusiness entrepreneurs at African Youth Forum

April 19, 2017

In April 2017, CTA will be launching a new handbook and organising events as part of the African Agripreneurs Youth Forum (AYA Forum) in Ibadan, Nigeria. The Forum will enable young agripreneurs from across Africa to showcase their success stories and connect with business and development organisations. The aim is to scale up the impact of individual activities, and show that, with greater access to enterprise support, youth can become a transforming force in African agriculture.

The AYA Forum is being organised by the African Development Bank (AfDB), in collaboration with CTA, the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and the African Agribusiness Incubation Network (AAIN). The Forum will take place on 25 and 26 April, with a preceding partner event on 23 and 24 April. About 250 young agripreneurs from across Africa, as well as institutional and business partners, are expected to attend. Ken Lohento, ICT4Ag Programme Coordinator, and notably in charge of youth entrepreneurship projects, will be there to represent CTA.

A handbook for young ICT agripreneurs 

During the AYA Forum, CTA will officially launch its new handbook, An ICT Agripreneurship Guide – A Path to Success for Young ACP Entrepreneurs. This publication relays CTA's experience of working with young people in the information and communications technology (ICT) sector. Its writing was led by the Caribbean consultancy firm Connectimass. It describes real-life examples through case studies and interviews with entrepreneurs, provides step-by-step guidance on setting up and running an e-agriculture business, and gives recommendations on designing successful business models and how to avoid common pitfalls.

First of its kind, the booklet is an introductory must-have reference material for any young aspiring agripreneur in an ACP country looking to offer services to the agricultural sector. It is also invaluable for institutions supporting young innovators and those who are already engaged in the ICT and agriculture sectors, but who are struggling to thrive.

Currently, many young people do not consider farming an attractive career path – that the average age of farmers in Africa is 60 years is testimony to this. The CTA handbook is designed to help change this trend and provide a positive outlook for young innovators in agribusiness. Michael Hailu, Director of CTA, expresses the need to support agripreneurs in his foreword: “Provided that conducive frameworks are put in place to support their endeavours, today’s youth can, not only seize these opportunities by trading in agricultural products, but also by offering innovative and income-generating services to the sector."

Accelerating youth entrepreneurship

As a pre-event to the AYA Forum, CTA will run, on 23 and 24 April, a workshop entitled Accelerating Youth Agriculture Entrepreneurship Using ICTs. This workshop is designed for partners including development organisations, venture capitalists, young start-up companies, farmer organisations and representatives of national entrepreneurship programmes.

The workshop will review the results of CTA's AgriHack Talent initiatives, and consider how to scale up this kind of business promotion. It will also discuss proposals for supporting youth agribusinesses via stronger ICT business services, and look at technical partnership and funding opportunities.

Find out more

- Download CTA's publication An ICT Agripreneurship Guide – A Path to Success for Young ACP Entrepreneurs
- Read CTA's special web report 'Meet 6 successful young ACP Agripreneurs'.
- Read about the AgriPitch Entrepreneurship Competition – finalists will be selected at the AYA Forum.
- Keep an eye on the AYA Forum hashtag, #AgriPitch2017, on Twitter.

Stay connected

- Follow @CTAflash, @ardyis_cta and @AgriHack on Twitter for regular updates.
- Connect with CTA on Facebook.
- Subscribe to the CTA Flash newsletter.

Read the stories of six young people who started from scratch and have now succeeded in agriculture

Youth reportage