EMRC-Rabobank Project Incubator Award winner Jean Claude Ruzibiza, Owner and Managing Director of Rwanda Best Farm Ltd, announces his win as having a profound impact on his future business plans in a candid interview with EMRC.
“The Agribusiness Forum has been a great opportunity for me and my company to gain exposure to a wide and varied business community where potential business partnerships are emerging,” Ruzibiza states.
Ruzibiza received a US$15,000 cash prize for winning this year’s award, following an entrepreneurial contest run in the last few months. He was announced winner by the jury at the Gala Evening held on Monday 7th October, during the AgriBusiness Forum 2013, entitled ‘The Agri-Food Sector: A Catalyst for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth in Africa’, held in Kigali, Rwanda.
“The money won will be used to expand my business and strengthen the capacity building of local farmers. It will also cover the cost of the starting kit package given to the farmers at the end of their training to help them practice what they have learned,” he explains.
Ruzibiza was up against tough competition this year and the finalists were: Bukola Adeshina representing A & Shine International – Nigeria, Cathy Mbuyi Tshiswaka representing OptiFood Production – DRC and Peace Byandusya from the Mushroom Training and Resource Centre – Uganda, each presenting their projects to the 400 plus international audience.
During the forum, Pierre van Hedel, Managing Director of the Rabobank Foundation and one of the founders of the Award, acknowledged that this year’s competition was of the highest level. “We received a few dozen proposals. Once again we were faced with hard decisions. Each project ticked the boxes we are looking for, which include sustainability and having a positive impact on the local community.”
This year’s AgriBusiness Forum was inaugurated by the Prime Minister of Rwanda, Honorable Pierre Habumuremyi and hosted by Rwanda’s Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI) and over four days, forum attendees networked, took part in plenary sessions and workshops and participated in over 600 B2B sessions. Speakers ranged from Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture Akinwunmi Adesina, to Ami Lustig, President& CEO – LR Group, to representatives of farmer communities across Sub-Saharan Africa, to financial institutions and R&D institutes.
This year’s forum took place in collaboration with the UN’s Food and Agriculture Org., Rabobank Foundation and the Rwanda Development Board in addition to LR Group, Balton Group, Banque Populaire du Rwanda, UniBrain, FARA, BTC Rwanda, FPI, ProCad, Osun State, USAID, IFDC, Bralirwa, Minimex, PSF, CooPac, I&M Bank, NaeB and Rwanda Mountain Tea and with the International Finance Corporation as the forum’s Knowledge Partner and the African Business Roundtable as Networking Partner.
To read the full interview of Jean Claude Ruzibiza, please click here: http://www.emrc.be/en/media/interviews/jean-claude-ruzibiza—agri13.aspx
To view speakers’ presentations, please click here: http://www.emrc.be/en/events/agribus2013/presentations.aspx
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