CTA’s Plug & Play – Tech-Dating for Agriculture is an event usually organised in collaboration with international conferences and workshops to showcase the range of ICTs and mobile platforms developed and being implemented on the field. It gives participants a structured hands-on introduction to emerging ICTs for agriculture.
This edition of the Plug & Play, set to take place on 29 November 2016, aims to demonstrate selected ICT applications for agriculture to a global audience during the West Africa Grain Trade Conference. It is designed as a half-day event together with other activities.
Plug & Play allows innovators to demonstrate their systems in-turns thereby allowing participant to experience as many innovations that is of interest. Participants have the time and opportunity for one-on-one discussion with peers and innovators on the challenges in the field, what is new, what is working, etc. Participants are encouraged to engage with the innovators during the sessions. It is a fantastic opportunity for a valuable and very practical insight into the new technologies and a true hands-on experience with demonstrations by prestigious application providers and experienced practitioners.
Innovations are selected through a competitive process to closely parallel the broader conference theme and streams and to meet the needs of all stakeholder groups. Innovators are given one minute each at the beginning of the event to pitch their innovations to the audience from which participants decide which one to visit. Innovators are then given rooms/booths and allocated time to demonstrate and engage participants on the potentials of their innovations.
- ICT innovators: It offers them the opportunity to demonstrate their solutions to interested clients
- Agricultural value chain actors: It enables them to discover the latest ICT platforms for their agricultural activities
- Investors: It provides them with a unique platform to identify viable areas for investment
- Donors: It presents options for discovering emerging areas for support
- Policy makers: It creates the room for understanding and exploring potential areas for policy and decision actions
CTA has a unique experience and the track record of organizing Plug & Play events. The first of its kind was organized in Kigali, Rwanda during the 2013 ICT4Ag International Conference. Around 40 different innovations covering almost all components of the agricultural value chain were demonstrated. In July 2014, the second Plug & Play event was staged in Nairobi during the Fin4Ag International Conference. About 15 innovations specific to agricultural finance were featured. The third Plug & Play event was organized in Arusha, Tanzania in December 2014 during an MIS Training Workshop where ICTs/mobile platforms supporting market information systems (MIS) especially data collection, processing, analysis, dissemination as well as agribusiness activities such as tracking field activities, vouchers systems, subsidy programs, etc. were demonstrated. In 2015, three other Plug & Play events were organized in Addis, Ethiopia during the AFAAS Extension Week, Feldafing, Germany during an ICT4Ag Workshop for the GIZ’s Green Innovation Centres, and Durban, South Africa during GFIA Africa. In May 2016, Plug & Play event was organized in Geneva, Switzerland in collaboration with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). It was a mini event that showcased 7 innovations to a global audience on the potentials of ICTs to support agriculture and rural development activities.
For more information on past Plug & Play events, visit the following portals:
Name of ICT Platform: La Boutique Paysanne
Presenter: Alex Gbetie, Technical lead
Description: ''La Boutique Paysanne'' is a selling and promotion space of national agricultural products coming from the manufacture, that is part of a strong brand and an original know-how. Main partners of "La Boutique Paysanne" are cooperatives, specifically the actors of the processing sector who act as suppliers. "La Boutique Paysanne" is positioning itself as a promotion and retailing space led by agro value chains actors. Therefore, economic operators can join the network through franchise agreement.
• Make a circuit of products in sale /retail available for the partners
• Promote processed foods from Côte d'Ivoire
• Promote the label "Made in Côte d'Ivoire"
• Encourage producers toward local transformation
• Create jobs for young people
• Improve the life standards of farmers and processors
Presenter Bio: Alex Calvin Gbetie is a young Ivorian of 23 years old. Holder of BTS (Superior Technician Certificate) in Computer Science, specialisation in Application Development. For 3 years, he worked as a web developer, content & community manager, graphic designer, ICT trainer. He joined ICT4DEV, a company specializing in the development and integration of ICT solutions, as a graphic designer and web designer, and works entirely on "La Boutique Paysanne".
Name of ICT Platform: AgriData-BF
Name of ICT Platform: Lôr Bouôr
Presenter: Alain Pierre Abredan, Senior Programmer
Description: Lôr Bouôr is an integrated platform built to bring together actors in the agricultural value chain, a place for advice and promotion of modern agriculture, efficient and adapted to an increasingly digital world. It is also a virtual market, combining offers and demands for agricultural products with a management tool for farmer organisations (cooperatives) and their partners.
It is based on the following services:
• GELICO (Online Management of Agricultural Cooperatives): management application for agricultural cooperatives (identification of members, parcels, agricultural production flows, etc.),
• The Web portal: information portal, training, contact and promotion, dedicated to actors and initiatives of the agricultural value chain,
• Market Information System (MIS) "SIM DjoriDjori": SMS application for disseminating and consulting prices and product trends in urban and rural markets,
• Voice kiosk "Djassi": voice server for the dissemination of agricultural information (prices, weather, culture techniques, advice, advertising, etc.) in local languages,
• Virtual Market: virtual market for exchanges between sellers (agricultural cooperatives and wholesalers) and customers, it is based on an SMS and web application that allows to publish and / or to consult the offers and the demands that are updated in the market.
Presenter Bio: Alain Pierre Abredan is a full-stack developer. He is in charge of the apps development team at ICT4DEV. His knowledge, experience and mastery of web, mobile and SMS / USSD application development techniques, allowed him to join the Lôr Bouôr project team where he contributes to the development and implementation of innovative e-agricultural solutions that contribute to the happiness of African farmers.
Name of ICT Platform: mLouma
Presenter: Aboubacar Sidy Sonko, Founder & CEO, Amandjine Consulting
Description: The mLouma platform is based on Web, SMS, and USSD. It allows farmers to be able to post their crops and have market price information in real time. Product operation is very simple and has been designed in response to numerous discussions with end users. The producer submits his product via SMS, Web, USSD. This information is visible and accessible via mlouma.com. The buyer consults these offers by using the same channel. When the users find a product that interests them, they place order. Once both players reach an agreement, a carrier will be contacted for delivery. The USSD service allows us to reach any farmer living in remote areas without Internet access. The innovation has positioned itself as a regulator between producers and buyers of agricultural products.
The main problem that we identified and are trying to solve is the marketing of agricultural products in Senegal and through Africa in general. There is a lack of transparency on agricultural commodity prices in markets and this fact damages the smallholders farmer who are struggling to sell their products at better prices. We target farmers, buyers and carriers. Over 100,000 users are registered on our platform with a rate of 150 new users per day. We currently operate in 7 regions in Senegal and we have 50 products in four categories (Fruits, Vegetables, Cereals, Oilseeds) in our database. The start-up is based in Dakar, Senegal, West Africa, and aims to deploy the platform into more than 15 countries of Africa in the next 5 years.
Presenter Bio: Aboubacar is the founder of Amandjine Consulting which is specialized in web and mobile solution oriented towards rural areas in general and agriculture in particular. In 2013 he launched mLouma platform the flagship product of Amandjine Consulting. Aboubacar is passionate about the company and sees the opportunity to use technology as a lever for development. Aboubacar is an IT engineer and graduate from the University Gaston BERGER of Saint-Louis. He is a Mandela Washington Fellow 2015 and he is also recognized as 2014 INDIAFRICA Young Visionary Fellow, a speaker of GFIA 2014 at Abu Dhabi. He also won the mAgri Challenge 2013 organized by the World Bank through Infodev (November, 2013 in Washington D.C.).
Name of ICT Platform: MERGDATA
Presenter: Albert Bensusan, Senior Associate – Corporate Services (Farmerline)
Description: Farmerline's Mergdata Application provides simple, accurate and efficient data collection, mapping and presentation tools in supporting organizations to make strategic decisions. The system architecture is a hybrid model that effectively blends mobile web and mobile native applications. This allows the system to take advantage of the architecture of both web and native applications whilst minimizing the limitations of both systems.
Mergdata is cloud powered application with web platform for administrators to create surveys, manage users and enumerators, access data, statistics and generate reports. The android platform of the application, allows for seamless deployment of surveys to android devices for field staff or enumerators to collected data, built on sophisticated algorithms which allows computational functionalities, data cross-referencing and geo-location functions for accurate location and mapping either offline or online. MERGDATA has a reliable and centralized database system which facilitates the electronic capture, storage, and utilization of data. Data collected is synced to the cloud which is available to the organization near real time for use. The responses from the surveys can be visualized and exported for further analysis.
Presenter Bio: Albert Bensusan joined Farmerline as a Business Development Associate in 2015. He holds a BSc. in Business Administration from Ashesi University College. He's responsible for identifying potential partnerships and selling Farmerline's Services. He is now the Senior Associate responsible for corporate services and the Lead for the corporate services team. He comes from a finance background having worked in investment banking at Gold Coast Brokerage and corporate finance at Wildon and Kwelny Advisors Limited. He is passionate about technology and makes a conscious effort to be informed about what is going on within the industry. Albert is currently pursuing the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) certification.
Name of ICT Platform: PayDunya
Presenter: Youma Fall, Sales manager
Description: PayDunya is an intermediary, a third party that connects companies specialized in e-commerce with clients that are interested in paying for their products online. PayDunya is a Senegalese company that has partnerships with mobile money operators, money transfer services and financial institutions that provide online payments both nationally and internationally.
In addition, PayDunya allows farmers and other players in the agricultural sector to expand their distribution network. PayDunya's service, Clic and Pay, allows merchants who do not have their own professional website to create a webshop on their platform. The platform allows local payments such as Orange Money and Joni Joni or international ones such as via bank cards. Therefore, thanks to Clic and Pay, farmers can receive their money in advance without having to apply for a bank account.
Currently, PayDunya has a dashboard available that allows merchants to keep track of their virtual banking activity at one of the 12.000 Joni or Orange Money check-points or agencies in Senegal, emphasizing that having a bank account is still not a requirement in order to access your money. In addition, given the fact that approximately 7.5 million people in Senegal use a smartphone, the dashboard is also available for online users as a mobile application.
Presenter Bio: Youma Fall is PayDunya's Sales Manager. She joined PayDunya in March 2015, right after the pilot phase. Prior to that, she worked as an engineer at Tigo, Senegal's second largest mobile network operator. She is a Telecommunications Design Engineer and shares a passion for ICT and Technology. She enjoys volunteering and participating in the development of Senegal. She has extensively worked with economic interest groups, entrepreneurs, NGO's and companies throughout Senegal. Ms Fall is also an active member of the Women in ICT community in Senegal, the first and largest club that is dedicated to encourage the participation of women and girls in ICT.
Name of ICT Platform: PANEX
Presenter: Kefa Nyakundi
Description: The Pan Africa Exchange (PANEX) is an Africa-focused international derivative exchange "commodities exchange." PANEX is licensed by the Securities and Exchange Commission in Zambia. The exchange is an all-electronic marketplace featuring state-of-the-art technology. This FIX compliant system is comprised of a matching engine, order management system, brokerage platform, clearing member platform and the clearinghouse infrastructure. Additionally, an Electronic Warehouse Receipt (EWR) system supports commodities financing for small-scale farmers and traders. PANEX anchors an ecosystem of farmers, warehouse and logistics operators, brokers, traders and commercial banks which together form the total inputs necessary to support seamless local commodities price discovery in Africa, hedging and financing services. The platform combines MIS functionalities, price discovery, hedging, record keeping and financing services. As an exchange, price discovery occurs when buy and sell orders are matched from farmers, traders, processors or even speculators. During the price discovery process, default risk is managed, hence creating confidence for sellers and buyers. The buyers and sellers pay a small fee for each trade they execute on the platform. After a price discovery is reached, the price is then published on PANEX platform in real time and also distributed through several media including phone, radio, TV ticker tape and many other forms. PANEX is available on several platforms including web, mobile application (both Android and iPhone) and a Windows PC application. The entire platform runs on cloud computing, making it efficient and cost effective to scale. It can accommodate an unlimited number of users.
Presenter Bio: Kefa is a Director at PANEX. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) with over 20 years senior-level experience in banking, finance and risk management. He holds a diploma in Risk Management in Finance and Banking (RMIFB) from Stockholm, Sweden. Currently studying for his MBA, Kefa has a unique resume that combines practical experience in Banking and Consultancy services. In Banking, he is a qualified Charted Banker and held various senior level positions in principally related to Risk Management both at operational and strategic levels.
Name of ICT Platform: AGRICO
Presenter: Compaoré Issouf, Web and Mobile application Developer, Yam-Pukri
Description: Farmers' cooperative management has become very important nowadays because of the increasing number of members and diversity of activities to be carried by the management team. The aim for efficiency in farmers' organisations requires the use of performants and appropriate tools. AGRICO is a software package that allows agricultural cooperative to record members' references (groups and individuals), the agreements/contracts that link them, the data related to agricultural inputs (fertilizers, seeds, etc.) and their variations. Then the cooperative will just have to progressively fill the references to be able to extract and analyze the data per city, villages, farmers' groups, individuals and annual campaigns.
The offered possibilities are, among others:
• Members' registration according to their status
• Commitments management: loans for seeds, fertilizers, etc.
• Retail management: stock and quality management, etc.
• Crop management: size, margin, yield, added charges, etc.
• Environment management, crop monitoring, etc.
Presenter Bio: Compaore Issouf, student in Master's degree in Computer sciences, is a web and mobile solution developer at Yam-Pukri. He designed and built several websites and platforms : Workgroup for Non-Formal Education, the website for l'Union des Etuveuses de Riz, the website of the Association for the Promotion of Non-Formal Education, the VASCIS-BF platform that allows to link maize and soybean value chain actors, etc. As a Web 2.0 trainer, he contributes to the training of users in the web-technology domain.
Name of ICT Platform: SOJA DECISION
Presenter: KEGLOH Yawo Edo, Software developer at DITOMEDIA
Description: Soja Decision is a mobile platform that connects actors in the soybean sector throughout the value chain on the one hand, and with all stakeholders interested in the sector on the other. This relationship is created through the participatory lending system known as crowd lending, which is used to finance the campaigns and activities of the sector and as a marketplace for opportunities to buy and sell soybean and related products. It works as a showcase that will allow investors to inject funds, with the possibility of having a return in-kind or cash. The platform will also serve as a decision-making tool for soybean farmers in order to improve their yield and optimize their production costs. It will provide all the necessary tools to enable investors to better understand the costs of production and performance through a predictive operating account simulator and static data. An SMS service is also added to the functionality of the application.