By Chris Loka:
Agricultural technology insurance company, Pula, has raised $6 million in a fundraising activity aimed at de-risking millions of smallholder farmers from African countries including Malawi.
The new investment will be used to scale up operations in the company’s existing 13 markets across Africa. Currently, Pula has impacted over 4.3 million farmers on the continent and the new funding will also help propel its expansion into Asia to power resilience and profitability for Asian smallholder farmers.
The firm’s co-founder Rose Goslinga, said when they were establishing the company in 2015, their goal was to build and deliver scalable sustainable insurance solutions for Africa’s 700 million smallholder farmers.
“Since the launching of the firm, we have built strong traction for our products but that fact remains that, across Africa and other emerging markets, there are still millions of smallholder farmers with risks to their livelihoods that have not been covered”.
“In the midst of a global pandemic, farmers need assurances now more than ever and, with this in mind, it is time to scale up. Having TLcom Capital and Women’s World Banking along on the journey with us opens up many more opportunities as we build across the continent and beyond,”Goslinga said.
According to Goslinga, through its partnerships with banks, governments and agricultural input companies, Pula is at the centre of an ecosystem which provides insurance to smallholder farmers and has amassed 50 insurance partners as well as six reinsurance partners.
Managing Partner and founder at TLcom Capital, Maurizio Caio, said: “In Pula, we found a company addressing a hugely underserved market in one of Africa’s key drivers of growth and, with this, an opportunity for major economic upside.”
Caio further said potential for the insurance market for smallholder farmers in Africa is huge and that Pula has rapidly established a strong presence throughout the continent and has a number of high-profile clients.
“We are confident of Pula’s potential for growth in spite of the pandemic and look forward to partnering with them as they execute the next phase of their journey,” he said.
Launched in 2015 by Goslinga and Thomas Njeru, Pula designs delivers agricultural insurance and digital products to help smallholder farmers endure climate risks, improve their farming practices and bolster their incomes over time.