By AUSTIN OWOICHO, Abuja
In keeping with the State of Osun’s agenda to boost the grassroot economy, the AJEMART project has continued to link Osun producers of all sizes to bigger markets within and outside the country. In line with the Governor Gboyega Oyetola administration’s efforts to make Osun more business and investment-friendly, The project launched nearly a year has seen over 6,000 Osun producers and sellers identified, enumerated, verified and aggregated in a marketplace where they are connected to markets beyond the State of Osun, and now launching another ambitious campaign to extend the successes recorded so far.
AJEMART, literally translated ‘prosperity market’ is a market linkage service which actively connects farmers, food producers, artisans & medium-scale manufacturers to larger markets within and beyond Nigeria using brick & mortar as well as modern methods. The projects seek to deepen prosperity among Osun’s productive base by accelerating sales of products and exposing Osun producers to the world. The service uses an on-the-ground army of agents as well as a marketplace platform to connect buyers to verified sellers of locally farmed, locally made products and artisans who are Osun indigenes and residents.
AJEMART is championing MSME solutions by removing the inhibitions that local producers suffer as well as expose State Of Osun products and producers to larger markets in Lagos and beyond by allowing buyers from different parts of the world get in touch with the sellers directly without the middleman.
According to the Project Manager Clement Adebayo, whose responsibility is to ensure that all the relevant stakeholders from State of Osun, Sellers and buyers achieve their goals said “one of the key benefits of the initiative is to create and raise employment by assisting local producers and sellers from the State of Osun to increase the demand for their products through adequate market visibility which we believe will lead to the economic growth of the state”.
He went further to say, “In over 1 year of operation, the program has so far enumerated over 6,000 producers, they have been trained on marketing, sales fulfilment, customer service and provided relevant information about entrepreneurship. There are presently over 2,000 producers who have listed their products and services on the platform through the efforts of employed agents across local governments and LCDA offices in Osun. With the AJEMART digital platform, ajemart.com, users can easily shop for agricultural products (such like coconut oil, palm oil, fresh potatoes, fruits, etc.), artifacts, building materials, textile materials, office and home furniture among others; all from the State of Osun to the world.”
As part of the agenda, of the Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola administration to position Osun has a business and investment-friendly state, the project through is statewide productivity assessment has mapped all local governments according to their product competitiveness, producing a statewide list of products per local government arguably an unprecedented feat in the state. The initiative has also identified over 200 top producers in Osun whose products are candidates for national inspiration for entrepreneurship. Notable among such are the locally made Clay Water dispenser from ATAMORA, the locally made Engine Oil from MOYE OIL, locally made nails among others.
Also speaking on the initiative, The Center Manager, Technology Incubation Center (TIC), Île-Ife Office, Mrs. Eunice Oladoyin expressed hope that the move will result in commercialization of locally made products from the State of Osun, fruitful collaborations in various sectors and technology transfer among entrepreneurs.
One of the enlisted producers on AJEMART, Mr. Kayode Afolabi, the Managing Director of Agrikk Matas who also doubles as President of All Farmers Association of Nigeria, Osun State Chapter, whose business deals in every aspect of Agriculture from seedling, cultivation of various crops, fishery, piggery among others said: “product exposure, innovations and collaborations are the keys to the growth of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector. He expects through Ajemart to connect to buyers outside the State of Osun in no distant time”.
Mrs. Victoria Oluwaseun a verified businesswoman and seller on Ajemart who specializes in training and production of skincare products especially coconut oil and whose business is located in Obokun, Osun, said she believes the initiative will definitely result in employment generation as a result of increase in demand for her products and consequently, boost the economy of the state.
AJEMART aggregates sellers in the State of Osun, providing a platform for them to reach buyers like you and I who seek fresh and indigenous products. The service is accessible at www.ajemart.com