Posted by Timige, On 13 Nov, 2023 | Updated On 13 Nov, 2023 No Comments »
STERLING Bank Plc has reiterated its commitment towards the HEART strategy which promotes Health, Education, Agriculture, Renewable energy and Transportation.
AgroPitch is an event that aims to empower agricultural innovation, entrepreneurship, and agribusiness development.
It provides a platform for individuals, startups, or teams to present their agricultural business ideas or projects to a panel of judges, potential investors, or experts in the field.
Consequently, the bank, last week, offered N25 million to five agro-innovators at the Agric Summit Africa (ASA) AgroPitch 2023..
Green Republic Farms Limited, a women-led social enterprise promoted by Baliqees Salaudeen emerged the overall winner after a pitch. She was rewarded with a N5 million grant with a fully funded scholarship to the Lagos Business School.
The second position went to Eden-Acres Integrates Farm promoted by Mrs Ozioma Onwordi while Kernelinc Resources Limited promoted by Amajuoyi Ikechukwu emerged third.
Others are: Duketrah Fisheries with Bidemi Olorunkooba at fourth position and OG Capital owned by Godwin Adoga at fifth position and winning N5 million each.
The Group Head of Agric and Solid Minerals, Sterling Bank, Dr Shola Obikanye, said it was the bank’s visionary leadership that had selected five sectors of Nigeria’s economy as its focal First.
According to him, it is not a coincidence that focus Agriculture stands in the middle of the HEART acronym.
“We are merely trying to underscore the fact that for us in Sterling Bank, Agriculture is at the heart of the other sectors in our strategic focus. We have embraced the entire value chain, “ he stated.
Obikanye said that since its maiden edition in 2019, ASA had played a pivotal role in addressing critical issues within the nation’s agricultural sector.
Obikanye said ASA 2023 with the theme: “Empowering Innovations: A Confluence of Capital, Vision, and Agribusiness Enterprise,” is apt because of the bank’s belief that the sector that engages predominant quantum of the country’s population will be that sector to look out for that will lead the prosperity of the nation.
According to him, the initiative has rightly earned its place as a cornerstone event for the agriculture sector in sub-Saharan Africa.
He explained that to commemorate its fifth anniversary, ASA had chosen to lead with the kind of innovation and change it had advocated for over the years.
Obikanya added that the driving force behind ASA AgroPitch 2023 was rooted in ASA’s commitment to financing Nigeria’s agriculture sector and fostering the change needed for advancement.
“So, Sterling Bank strategically established it’s agric desk about 11 years ago. And we have grown our books from a paltry 0.2 percent to the 15 percent that we have today.
Agriculture Summit Africa is one of the leading privately sponsored agribusiness conferences in Sub-Saharan Africa. Organized by Sterling Bank Limited, a foremost commercial bank in Nigeria, in partnership with key stakeholders, the ASA brings together practitioners, policymakers, financiers, and experts in renewable energy, and technology, in focused discussions to increase the participation, talent, competence, production and total value of agribusiness in Nigeria and Sub-Saharan Africa.
With a growing reputation, the ASA also attracts interest and attendance from a global audience.
“We’re interested in projects that have shown demonstrable progress and have the potential for further growth.
“ Breakthrough projects that address pressing agricultural challenges or create new opportunities in the sector and
Projects should be environmentally friendly and have the potential for long-term impact on communities and the broader agricultural sector, ‘ Obikanya stated.
Source: State Oyo - Tribune
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