Brastorne Bridges the Digital Gap by using Mobile Technology as a Vehicle for Rural Development
Fintech continues to alter the way many services operate in the process tilting scales in favour of consumers. According to forecasts, Africa’s fintech space will be in the value of approx. USD 3 Bn by 2020. In Botswana, government-owned Botswana Innovation Hub has launched a USD 1.2 M innovation fund targeting fields such as information technology and business services.
Africa has unceasingly faced technological and economic problems that Brastorne has been proactive in helping solve. Internet penetration of the African population is only 35.2%, which is significantly lower when compared to the rest of the world’s penetration of 58.4%. Brastorne launched the Chat and MPOTSA platforms, which are helping many people in Botswana connect with the rest of the world and stay updated with current affairs as well as gain access to financial solutions, more especially targeted at the unconnected and under-served population.
Brastorne is directly focusing on financial inclusion and creating employment through its mAgri product offering that is available under the Chat services. There has been substantial loss of wealth for many farmers in Africa owing to a lack of convenient liquid market places to sell and market their produce. Under-served farmers in remote areas were not able to sell their produce and compare prices on a nationwide basis, but now through the mAgri platform they can receive regular updates from the Ministry of Agriculture and Trade with other farmers and merchants using mAgri on their feature phones. mAgri also eases access to applications for funding with financial institutions and micro-finance houses using their simple feature phones.
Verdant Capital is currently advising Brastorne on a minority capital raise.