A UMaT graduate, Mr Kwame Ababio, has again made Ghana and the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT), Tarkwa, proud with tremendous strides at the maiden 2017 African Youth Got Talent Forum which featured 10 young agriculture entrepreneurs (agripreneurs) from Africa who are making money from Agriculture and Agribusiness in the continent. Mr Ababio was one of three winners and the only Ghanaian. The event was held in Nigeria. As part of the award, the three winners were invited to attend the Annual Meeting of the African Development Bank in May 2017 in India where Mr Kwame Ababio was adjudged the overall winner at the event.
The African Youth Agripreneurs Forum started with a 2-day Conference with thematic discussions and presentations of success stories; then an Agri-Pitch Entrepreneurship Competition that led to the selection of the three finalists for presentation at the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) Annual Meeting in May 2017 in India; and side events which included a mentor and incubator training programme. The competition was organised by the AfDB, in cooperation with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), the African Agribusiness Incubators Network and the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation.
Mr Ababio Kwame is the founder of Green Afro-Palms (GAP): a “young” sustainable agro-company, based in the Ashanti region of Ghana. The company has an innovative and scalable model that utilises oil palm fruits from small scale farmers to produce palm oil for human consumption in a more affordable, quality and hygienic manner.
Mr Kwame Ababio found a way of making technology more available and affordable to traditional oil palm farmers in Ghana. This was done by scaling down the 100,000 US dollar technology farmers need to process their produce to about 40,000 US dollar for a functionally similar technology. However, because 40,000 US dollars is still a high cost for local Ghanaian farmers, Green Afro-Palms devised a revenue integration model whereby the technology is rented to the farmers along with marketing assistance. The farmers then pay the company back from the profits they make. The company’s revenues currently stand at 100,000 US dollars with expansion plans to include Nigeria, Liberia and beyond. The aim is to make 1 million US dollars in the next three years.
Mr Ababio is a Geomatic Engineer who is using his engineering and entrepreneurial skills he acquired in UMaT where equal emphasis is placed on both theory and practice and therefore makes the graduate to think outside the box.
Source: Paul Y.A. Yeboah, Assistant Registrar and Head, University Relations