South African startup to boost hydroponic production

Despite little VC capital, South Africa’s agritech sector is pushing ahead. TechCabal caught up with a few to get more info on their contributions to SA’s breadbasket sector.

According to Wandile Sihlobo, an agriculture economist and author, technology has played a significant role in making South Africa’s agricultural sector the most advanced on the continent. “South Africa has been able to make great strides in biological and mechanical engineering technologies, which has seen the country’s agriculture sector’s output more than doubled since 1994,” Sihlobo told TechCabal.

One of those startups is Tsehla Holdings, a startup specializing in hydroponic farming. “Technologies like hydroponics help tackle adverse and unpredictable weather patterns which can lead to droughts. With such technologies, we can control our production, thus ensuring that whatever happens with the weather, at least the production of food continues to go on,” Roseline Mapuranga, founder of Tsehla, told TechCabal.

Mapuranga shared that the main challenge she faced was access to funding, as hydroponics is cash-intensive. She secured an investment from the Africa Trust Group, which she used to refine the company’s go-to-market strategy. After that, she landed a supplier contract with one of South Africa’s leading retail chain stores. Tsehla is also an alumnus of the Grindstone X program, one of the country’s leading accelerators.

Source: 10 Techcabal

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