The Vijana na AgriBiz competition seeks to foster innovation in agricultural practices, build the capacity of local entrepreneurs, especially the youth and women, promote an innovative entrepreneurial culture in agribusiness, enhance local and international awareness of innovative agribusiness practices, create market linkages, offer opportunities for scaling up and identify support for high-growth agribusiness entrepreneurs contributing to economic growth.
The Competition Finals were graced by Sandra Sichlau, a representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark to Kenya (DANIDA). First Secretary for Climate and Resilience, Kenya Climate Innovation Center Chief Executive Officer Joseph Murabula, and key players in the Kenyan agricultural sector.
In her opening remarks, Ms. Sandra Sichlau lauded the Kenya Climate Innovation Center’s efforts to fronting women and youth in fighting the effects of climate change through sustainable innovations. “Young people have the drive and commitment to grow their ideas into sustainable businesses. We all need to work together and support them to realize their dreams. This is how we empower youth and women to lead successful and sustainable businesses,” she said.
Innovation plays a significant role in the growth of the agricultural sector amidst the sector being adversely affected by climate change. Kenya Climate Innovation Center (KCIC) launched a call for applications for the Vijana na AgriBiz Competition under the AgriBiz program. The competition aimed to identify and support youth’s viable and high-growth innovative agribusiness ideas in Kenya. The program additionally sought to help agripreneurs establish sustainable businesses through capacity building, mentorship, market linkages, and access to financing.
The Call for Application, launched in August 2022, received over 1000 applications across all counties in Kenya. The top 40 selected applicants were enrolled in a Bootcamp and investor readiness training. The participants received training on business canvas, marketing, and how to uniquely pitch before a panel of judges. The competition culminated with an award ceremony. The overall winner walked home with a cash prize of 1 million shillings. The second and third position winners were awarded Ksh 750,000 and 500,000, respectively.