30 attended by key stakeholders in agriculture, including representatives from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and farming District Assemblies such as East Gonja, Savelugu and Sagnarigu. INCUBATION The Incubation pillar of KIC provides capacity building, mentorship, and seed funding through innovation challenges to promote the development of promising Ghanaian startup enterprises. During our annual business incubator program, young entrepreneurs spend five months in residence to develop business plans around commercially viable technological solutions to development challenges within the agricultural sector. One of the highlights of the incubator for the young entrepreneurs – known in the program as “AgriTechies” – is the market research tour. The two- week tour brings the participants to five regions in Ghana – Greater Accra, Volta, Eastern, Ashanti, and Brong-Ahafo – to interact directly with farmers and agribusinesses to test their assumptions and collect valuable input. The young entrepreneurs also attend a series of lunch-and-learn programs aimed at deepening their understanding of the agricultural sector, studying challenges in agriculture, and analyzing their experiences and learnings from the research tour. The Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) is KIC’s key partner in the Incubation programming. MEST partners with KIC to provide training to the young entrepreneurs in the incubator program. The training emphasizes confidence, teamwork, presentation abilities, critical thinking skills, and business acumen. At the end of the KIC incubator program cycle, the startups pitch their final business plans during the Agritech challenge. The winning entrepreneurs receive seed funding, technical assistance, and mentorship to help them turn their business ideas into reality. The KIC started its second year in 2017 by reaching an exciting milestone: 100 young entrepreneurs accepted into the annual KIC Agritech Challenge program. Two start-up companies from this group won the 2017 Agritech Challenge and were funded by Kosmos: AgroInnova and QualiTrace. I’M GREATLY ENCOURAGED BY THE COMMITMENT KOSMOS CONTINUES TO SHOW TO THE KOSMOS INNOVATION CENTER BUSINESS BOOSTER PROGRAM. IT HAS BEEN A GREAT PLEASURE TO WORK WITH THE VENTURES AS A BUSINESS MENTOR. I HAVE SEEN IMPROVEMENT IN THE BUSINESSES AS THEY EMBRACE THE LESSONS LEARNT FROM THE PROGRAM AND THE GUIDANCE PROVIDED BY MENTORS AND INVESTORS. BEING INVOLVED IN THE KOSMOS INNOVATION CENTER HAS PROVIDED ME AN OPPORTUNITY TO GIVE BACK TO MY COUNTRY IN A WAY THAT WILL CREATE IMPACT IN MANY LIVES. Mr. Ishmael Yamson Jr. Mentor for the KIC Business Booster Three local entrepreneurs learn firsthand about challenges and opportunities in the agricultural industry during a market research trip to farms in Ghana.