Fund for African Rural Innovation Promotion

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Metal silos hold grains for advance payments

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Download the latest Foto-Fieldreport (28th August) from Msowero  HERE

At a glance:

  • 100 metal silos are now built and filled in Msowero (100 tons), waiting for high prices for selling in March-May 2018
  • TBM now aims to expand and increase the numbers of containers in Msowero as high as possible by July 2018
  • TBM needs soft loans for 24 months to purchase new silos @ 140 USD per silo
  • TBM needs soft loans for 10 months to pay advances to farmers when filling, @ 200 USD per container
  • FARIP needs donations for continued start-up coaching of TBM during the scaling up phase @ 50 USD per silo
  • Total investments is projected at 400 USD for each new silo in Msowero for 2018.
  • TBM aims to add minimum 100 more silos by July 2018 but wants to target up to 1’000 new silos in Msowero

See Home page for more photos and status

     After the successful pilot with 20 silos with the GPLP project, TBM expanded with this harvest in 2017 to more than 100 silos in Msowero. For this effort FARIP launched a crowdfunding campaign. At present 100 tons of good maize are stored in 100 silos in Msowero, waiting for higher prices in March-May 2018. The demand for silos however is much higher and TBM had to stop going further due to finances not allowing. Proof of technical, operational and economic proof of concept are now achieved. Proof of scaling-up concept is also almost achieved: We know how TBM can substantially increase numbers of silos. What remains is to see whether and how TBM manages to market 100 tons. However this is not expected to be a problem, as TBM has a proven track record of marketing maize.
    TBMs challenge at present is to prepare for the next harvest that starts in Msowero around August 2018. TBM aims to reach at least the 200 silos it needs to operationally break even in Msowero. But the target is “as many as possible”, as the total demand in Msowero and surrounding areas is estimated to be well above 1’000 silos. Fortunately the expansion is incrementally scaleable: For each 400 USD that can be raised before June 2018 (350 loans, 50 grants) one additional silo can be made ready and filled.
    TBM also considers starting in another location with a pilot as in Msowero. However, farmers only understand how this business works for them after they have experienced the first full cycle. Because TBM as yet can not raise the funds to cover its expenses while doing the first cycle, it will require grants to achieve that demo-effect with farmers in a new location.
Refer to downloadable documents (below) for more details.
Please take up contact with FARIP for expanding this venture which has a marked and sustained effect on rural incomes.

Short description of venture

Farmers have the opportunity to rent small metal silos for storing their grains. This enables them to sell the grains later when the prices have risen. However, farmers need cash at harvest time. Therefore the silos on lease are combined with a service of a) advance payments where the checked and locked grains act as the security, and b) assistance in marketing the grains in good markets when prices are higher through the "Transaction Security Services" of the Tanzanian company Biashara Mapema. 

Status of financing end Sept 2017

USD committed

USD not yet raised

1. At least 100 additional silos



2. Aim higher at 400 USD per additional silo



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