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Releaf

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Releaf

Releaf leverages digital financial services to increase the financial well-being of its partner farmers while improving its own operations

Releaf leverages digital financial services to increase the financial well-being of its partner farmers while improving its own operations

The Situation

With a bold vision to industrialize food processing in Africa; Releaf sources produce from over 1,800 smallholder farmers in the southern part of Nigeria, buying directly from them via a network of sourcing agents who inspect for quality, pays the farmer in cash and gets the goods transported to technology-optimised Releaf processing centres where they are cracked, processed in a more efficient manner, then exported to manufacturers in Europe and America.

Farmers are able to dial a USSD code to declare produce that they have for sale, and Releaf sourcing agents contact them to take it forward.

A significant inefficiency in the process is the fact that Releaf pays farmers in cash, which is not only an operational bottleneck and risk for Releaf, but also deepens the exclusion of the smallholder farmers from formal financial services like credit programs and reliable savings schemes.

OnePipe worked closely with Releaf to eliminate these cash inefficiencies, and help to bring improved financial happiness and health to smallholder farmers.

The OnePipe Solution

In partnership with multiple banks and a reliable digital lender, all via standardised and uniform APIs made available through a single integration, Releaf was able to activate bank accounts for farmers via the USSD code and brand these bank accounts as Releaf Wallet to retain affinity with farmers.

With the available APIs, farmers are able to dial a short code to have the accounts issued to them without any paperwork involved or visiting a bank branch (which are usually miles away anyway). In fact, for several farmers, this experience was the first time they were even enrolled for BVNs, which was made possible by the partner banks in this case.

With farmers now assigned Releaf Wallets, payments for produce is paid directly into these accounts. It didn’t stop there, farmers are able to dial same short code to:
  • Withdraw cash at nearby agents when needed
  • Buy airtime at a discount directly from their accounts
  • Build a digital trail that makes it possible to have loans provided to them when needed
  • Activate a savings plan for rainy days

OnePipe continues to work very closely with Releaf to drive adoption and improve the value proposition on an ongoing basis.

The Situation

With a bold vision to industrialize food processing in Africa; Releaf sources produce from over 1,800 smallholder farmers in the southern part of Nigeria, buying directly from them via a network of sourcing agents who inspect for quality, pays the farmer in cash and gets the goods transported to technology-optimised Releaf processing centres where they are cracked, processed in a more efficient manner, then exported to manufacturers in Europe and America.

Farmers are able to dial a USSD code to declare produce that they have for sale, and Releaf sourcing agents contact them to take it forward.

A significant inefficiency in the process is the fact that Releaf pays farmers in cash, which is not only an operational bottleneck and risk for Releaf, but also deepens the exclusion of the smallholder farmers from formal financial services like credit programs and reliable savings schemes.

OnePipe worked closely with Releaf to eliminate these cash inefficiencies, and help to bring improved financial happiness and health to smallholder farmers.

The OnePipe Solution

In partnership with multiple banks and a reliable digital lender, all via standardised and uniform APIs made available through a single integration, Releaf was able to activate bank accounts for farmers via the USSD code and brand these bank accounts as Releaf Wallet to retain affinity with farmers.

With the available APIs, farmers are able to dial a short code to have the accounts issued to them without any paperwork involved or visiting a bank branch (which are usually miles away anyway). In fact, for several farmers, this experience was the first time they were even enrolled for BVNs, which was made possible by the partner banks in this case.

With farmers now assigned Releaf Wallets, payments for produce is paid directly into these accounts. It didn’t stop there, farmers are able to dial same short code to:
  • Withdraw cash at nearby agents when needed
  • Buy airtime at a discount directly from their accounts
  • Build a digital trail that makes it possible to have loans provided to them when needed
  • Activate a savings plan for rainy days

OnePipe continues to work very closely with Releaf to drive adoption and improve the value proposition on an ongoing basis.

The Outcome

The partnership between Releaf and OnePipe has resulted in the digitization of the funds disbursement process to farmers, cutting out operational inefficiencies and risks while providing the smallholder farmers with access to financial services like credit and better savings opportunities. The Releaf use case is indicative of how maximizing combined resources can be useful in poverty alleviation and carving a path to prosperity.

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