Cropital, a crowdfunding platform for anyone to invest in improving the income and productivity of farmers in exchange for returns after harvest – thus, empowering the farmers in the process, was named the best business model in Esquire Financing Inc.’s 2nd run of Fueling the Dream: Business Model Competition.
Represented by Ruel Amparo and Rachel de Villa, both graduates of University of the Philippines Diliman, Cropital bested nine other finalists to win the Php 100 thousand cash prize, up to Php 1 million in capital, as well as features in offline and online media.
Other close contenders were Green Footprint (Patricia Baron, Michelle Herrera, Ma. Yzabel Domingo and Rey Buyco), providing 100% proudly Pinoy and non-toxic woven rattan caskets, Project Mushroom (Paula dela Cruz, Rio Abrenica and Keith Caasi), innovating products by-products of oyster and milky mushroom, Hot Papa Chili (Auie Anatalio, Martin Nunga and Alyssa Anatalio), introducing a local brand of all-natural, well-balanced and natural fortified chilli products, and Diligence Café (Anna Lorraine Uy and Elmerie Cabello Cuevas), providing all-nighter students and young professionals a conducive working spaces.
Rounding up the Top 10 are Empleo, an experience-centric employment platform, Mia Zorelle, a gelato made of all-natural and chemical-free leafy vegetables, Shroombella, an efficient, affordable and eco-friendly mushroom-based ferticides, Pret Rolis, a hand-held, full-packed and on-the-go spring rolls, and Pollinasyon, an apiary service that promotes pollination for crop productivity.
The final panel included Esquire Financing Inc. Chairman and CEO Raj Uttamchandani, AIM core faculty Prof. Richard Cruz, LBCX eCommerce Tech President Dino Araneta, Foundation for Sustainable Society Inc. Assistant Director for Development Services Jerome Ignacio, Bridging Creative Quotient CEO Raymund Sy, DTI-GIZ Consultant Dr. Ed Canela, Entrepreneur Philippines Managing Editor for Web Jaime Humarang, and Impact Hub Manila Co-Founder Ces Rondario. The event was also attended by EFI’s Vice Chairman Ravi Uttamchandani and CFO Sandeep Chandiramani.
Before the final presentation, the finalists underwent a mentoring session at Impact Hub Manila. Mentors include Esquire Financing Inc. President and COO Navin Uttamchandani, Got Heart Foundation Founder and Earth Kitchen Owner Melissa Yeung-Yap, and Impact Hub Manila Co-Founder Mathias Jaeggi.
Fueling the Dream was brought to the students and young professionals by Advocacy Partners: WWF Philippines and Foundation for a Sustainable Society Inc. (FSSI), Endorsers: Young Entrepreneurs Society (YES) and Global Entrepreneurship Week Philippines, and Media Partners: Entrepreneurs Philippines, WhenInManila.com, Moneysense, BusinessMirror, BusinessWorld, and The Manila Times, Asian Institute of Management (AIM) hosted the Workshop last August 15 and this Final Presentation.