South African agricultural service provider launches new agtech platform

SOUTH AFRICA – South African agricultural services provider AFGRI Agri Services has launched Axl, a new agtech platform designed to enable the convenient rental of farm equipment, facilitating the contract between the renter and the owner in an efficient and secure way.

Axl allows farmers to find, rent and pay for agricultural equipment through a secure portal while enabling the equipment owners to build their business and grow revenue streams and optimising the process of renting machines.

“Access to the right machinery at the right time is a critical success factor for farmers. Especially now, as the global pandemic has left global supply chains under immense pressure, uncertainty remains in the minds of our customers and currency volatility has resulted in the increase in equipment costs,” says Niki Neumann, the head of AFGRI’s strategic innovation division, AFGRI Technology Services (ATS).

Neumann said the company decided to launch the online platform sooner than planned. She attributes this to the need for an alternative solution.

AFGRI Equipment, a supplier of mechanised equipment throughout John Deere franchise in Africa, are co-developers of the platform and will be the first to offer the rental service to their customers.

However, the platform is for all South African farmers and equipment owners, including contractors and retailers alike.

In addition to that the Axl platform will allow clients of AFGRI Agri Services subsidiary, UNIGRO an agricultural finance partner, to use their revolving credit or production facilities to pay for rentals.

“Axl is an exciting platform, and UNIGRO is excited to integrate its financial services offering in support of the platform.  If a quality product offering like Axl enabled with convenient access to finance, delights our customers then we have been successful,” according to Ross Simmonds, the Managing Director of UNIGRO.

Afgri Equipment MD Patrick Roux said that by launching Axl during the current lockdown, Afgri Agri Services can support farmers through uncertain times in a new way.

“The company is positively transforming the equipment market for the better, starting now,” he said.

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