Nigeria became the largest economy in Africa in 2013 but was still yet to fulfill its true potential. The agriculture sector that always contributed up to 60% of its GDP had started declining steadily for almost a decade. As a country with 84 million hectares of arable land (an area larger than Turkey), there was a definite problem to address.
To solve this problem, the Nigerian Government sustained a subsidy program where the government was the sole actor in distribution. This did not work as only 11% of the $200m dollars subsidy was reaching the farmers. The remaining stolen subsidy found it’s way back to the market and was sold to the farmers in the black market. Because of this, agro-dealers couldn’t run a viable business and as a result began defaulting on bank loans. Subsequently banks stopped lending to the sector. Whether or not farmers had the money to buy fertilizers, the distribution value chain was in tatters and they could not access fertilizers.
“…only 11% of the $200m dollars subsidy was reaching the farmers.”
In 2012, Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development under the Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA) partnered with Cellulant on the Growth Enhancement Support (GES) Scheme. With the goal of improving the distribution of fertilizer and seeds subsidies to farmers, GES uses an E-wallet technology that effectively delivers services directly to the farmers by use of their mobile phones.
Our success story is as highlighted below:
We are proud to have had the opportunity to touch the lives of the hardworking farmers in Nigeria. And our story continues…. In not only Nigeria, but also the rest of the African continent where the Cellulant footprint is felt by both the government, as well as the citizens.