Storage and transportation of perishable products such as dairy products and vaccines remain a challenge. Thus, Oghenetega Iortim, Managing Director of GRICD in this interview shared what it will mean to win Africa’s Business Heroes competition grant in the Logistics category being sponsored by the Jack Ma Foundation.
What is GRICD all about?
Gricd aims at reducing losses by providing real-time visibility into the storage and transportation conditions of perishable products such as dairy products and vaccines. We make use of an infrastructure agnostic device called the “mote” to detect storage conditions in facilities and report this information in real-time via our enterprise software platform. The software platform then aggregates this data and provides our business partners data that prompts action to curb the loss of products.
What informed your decision to apply for the competition?
I think Africa’s Business Heroes is a great platform to showcase your company’s services as well as network and leverage the networks of other giants who participate at different stages of the program. These two prompted our decision to apply for the program as we believe this will be a major stepping stone in our growth process.
How do you describe the process so far?
I think it’s a thorough process. As a sole founder, it’s often great to have others look into your ideas and the steps you’ve taken to criticize and recommend better strategies and that’s what I’ve enjoyed most about the process. The feedback from the judges and mentors has been amazing, beyond the competition, the information gathered from the various ABH sessions will be valuable in running and growing Gricd.
Do you see GRICD making it to the top 10 and subsequently winning any of the grant categories?
Absolutely, I think our solution is quite vital to the continent especially during this COVID 19 pandemic. We’re currently working with the federal government to assure the quality of Moderna vaccines, and we also work with several other notable private organizations to ensure that drugs and vaccines being consumed are in the best condition. I simply need to show the judges the important role our business plays on the continent and hope for the best. I am optimistic.
What form of expansion do you intend to do if you eventually win the grant?
I think the plans for expansion for me will be to expand the engineering team, the sales team and technical support. The Nigerian market is so big, and we are yet to tap up to 0.5% of the market opportunity. To scale, we need the right sales team to bring in the customers, an excellent product that will be designed by the engineers and top-notch post-sales service offered by the technical support personnel.