Have you ever imagined a locust beans product that overcomes the inherent limitations of bad smell, short shelf life and unhygienic local production? If you have, the answer is closer than ever as, LifePro has developed a hygienic system that produces the best of locust beans through dehydration technology and innovative packaging without compromising on quality.
The team behind the project recently won the Platform Pitch competition—an initiative of the Young Professionals Boot camp which brought together about 200 young Nigerian entrepreneurs, artists, creative and professionals from all fields within the age of 20-25 together for a 4-day intensive residential boot camp—in Lagos. They went home with a 5-Million Naira equity-free grant.
The competition was launched for the first time this year, and every fellow and alumni of YPB were eligible. 12 semi-finalists were shortlisted and pitched for a spot on the platform during this year’s BootCamp in August.
Adebowale Oparinu, who leads the LifePro team, describes the company as a social enterprise that is up-scaling the massive potentials of cheap sources of vital organic nutrients to all Africans through technology and empowerment. Emmanuel Maduka, an Agriculture Communications Expert leads Sales and Marketing as a Co-Founder and Elizabeth Alagbe, also a Co-Founder, leads Operations as a Food Technologist.
Adebowale leads a team that is motivated to sell their product “Hiru” in and outside Nigeria and launch more innovatively manufactured products from African agricultural products that would provide cheap access to vital nutrients.
He explains that the company runs an inclusive social entrepreneurship model that is focused on empowering at least 1500 women in rural communities on the value chain across the country in 5 years. The production value chain creates an opportunity for the women to pre-process locust beans seeds and help them make steady income.
With a background in logistics project management, he says he is more interested in the concept of developmental economics and how social entrepreneurship can drive development.
The team explains that they are committed to chasing a bigger dream of making nutritious food easily accessible and affordable for all Africans.