Kenyan agtech Shamba Pride has closed $3.7M to grow its merchant network. Shamba Pride since 2016, the company has worked to improve last-mile distribution for farm inputs. It aims to address issues of price exploitation and ensure quality for farmers through its network of merchants, known as “digishops.”
The agricultural technology company has successfully established a network of 2,700 merchants, known as agro-dealers, spanning 24 counties in Kenya, just over half of the country. With its new plans, the next phase involves scaling further within the nation to include more retailers and agricultural regions over the next year. Also, there are plans to venture into neighboring markets such as Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia. These regions face similar challenges in their farm input supply chains, including issues related to sourcing, fluctuating prices, quality concerns, and stockouts.
Shamba Pride Growth Plans
The growth initiatives in Kenya, including the expansion of its franchise network, will be fueled by a $3.7 million debt-equity pre-Series A funding recently closed by the company. This funding comes from the EU agriculture financing initiative EDFI AgriFI and Seedstars Africa Ventures (SAV). The latest funding, which consists of $1.7 million in equity, builds on the $1.1 million capital raised in 2021 from SAV and Gray Matters Capital.
Shamba Pride transforms agro-dealers through digitization, enabling them to handle tasks such as business management and inventory ordering. This ensures the consistent availability of essential supplies like fertilizers and seeds to millions of small-scale farmers in rural areas.
Shamba Pride founder and CEO, Samuel Munguti, said “Agriculture distribution in rural communities is heavily controlled by agro-dealers who decide how farmers access inputs, services, and training. We are empowering these agro-dealers by giving them the right tools and technology for visibility of their businesses, for their professional and commercial development, and the right support for farmers around them.”
The agtech also provides farmers with market linkages, Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) financial services, and training information through its USSD platform.