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May 8-10John Deere at ICT4DApplication Development Competition

A continent-wide hackathon building digital solutions for farmers in Africa.

Congratulations to our Winners!

First Place: Patatinga

Second Place: Agora Code

Third Place: Akello Banker

About the Competition

To celebrate 100 years of innovation in tractors, John Deere is inviting developers from across Africa to build the solutions that will shape the next century.

This is an opportunity for developers to create and submit technology tools that:

  • Improve the business case for smallholder farmers to own a tractor
  • Improve access to affordable mechanization services for smallholder farmers
  • Make use of agriculture and technology in creative and unconventional ways


Thank you for your submissions! We will announce the winning teams at the ICT4D Conference in Lusaka, Zambia.

Sponsored by John Deere

The competition is led by John Deere, an agricultural leader in Africa and around the world.

Connect with Deere

African Solutions for African Farmers

We are thrilled to work with African web developers to create solutions for African farmers. In partnership with Zambian technology hub, BongoHive, we are working with talented application developers from across the continent and will announce hackathon winners at the ICT4D Conference in Lusaka, Zambia from May 8-10.

We have 38 teams competing in this year's hackathon. Our teams represent 19 countries, including 15 African countries across northern, southern, eastern, and western Africa.

In addition, our competiting team members are 35% female. 


Competing teams are from: 

  • Benin
  • Botswana
  • Cameroon
  • Ghana
  • Indonesia
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Nigeria
  • Pakistan
  • Rwanda
  • Senegal
  • South Africa
  • Sudan
  • Tanzania
  • Uganda
  • Zambia

The Process

Stage 1—March 28 to April 19, 2018 

Submission of applications

Stage 2—April 20 to April 25, 2018

Shortlisting and selecting the three best teams or solutions 

Stage 3—April 27 to May 4, 2018

Virtual support to the three finalists

Stage 4 (Final)—May 8, 2018

Announcement of winners and prizes at the ICT4D conference in Lusaka, Zambia

What to Submit: 

Please provide the following links describing your idea (app or website), explain what your product is (software, technology, intervention, design, research, prototype etc) and how it works. Refer to the selection criteria:

  • Link to a demo video (e.g. Dropbox, Google Drive, Youtube etc) and/or
  • Link to the prototype (e.g. Google Play Store, Apple App Store, Website etc) and/or
  • Link to any supporting documents (e.g. Pitch Deck/Presentation, Project Write-up).

Selection Criteria

Originality & Innovation

How unique and original is your application idea? How well does your application compete against any competitors? How does your application make innovative usage of the mobile platform to meet users’ needs?

Business Model

How does your team plan on making this a successful business? Have you thought about (either solved or identified problems) competition, how to scale, acquiring customers, revenue model etc?

Customer Validation

Is your team building something that people actually want? How well does your team understand customers and their customer’s needs. Did your team get out and talk to customers? What is your value proposition to customers?

Execution & Design

Have you established a “Minimal Viable Product” (software, hardware, etc.)? *Note: an MVP is the minimum set of features to be able to start collecting data. Does it deliver a compelling and captivating user experience? Were you able to demo something functional?


Winners will be featured at the ICT4D 2018 Conference, attended by technology leaders from around the world. An esteemed team of judges will select (3) three finalists and announce the winning teams at the ICT4D 2018 Conference to be held in Lusaka, Zambia. The winning teams will receive USD$2,000, USD$1,000, and USD$500 for first, second and third place respectively.


  • Participants will not submit content that is copyrighted, protected by trade secret or otherwise subject to third party intellectual property rights or other property rights.
  • Participants will not submit content that is unlawful or encourages conduct that would be considered a criminal offense.
  • Participants will own the IP rights for all their work.
  • By participating in the competition, every participant or team of participants give its express consent to Organizers to use all information derived or relating to the Hackathon for all kind of marketing and promotional purposes (hereinafter: Marketing content). Marketing content shall be provided without any compensation for the participants and shall be worldwide, perpetual and irrevocable.

Our Partners

The application development competition would not be possible without the leadership and support of John Deere, ICT4D, and BongoHive.

John Deere

John Deere is proud to sponsor the ICT4D conference and lead the continent-wide application development competition. As a leader in global agriculture, John Deere is on the front end of innovative solutions to serve farmers worldwide. 


ICT4D is an annual gathering of public, private, and civil society international development organizations to show how they are using technology to increase the impact of their work. This year's event will be May 8-10 in Lusaka, Zambia. 


BongoHive is Lusaka's leading innovation and technology hub, catalyzing the growth of Zambia's startup and tech communities. We are honored to partner with them to reach, evaluate, and present the best and brightest African developers.

John Deere: Leadership, Community Involvement, and Innovation

As a global agricultural leader, John Deere is honored to develop tools that serve farmers around the world. This year, John Deere is celebrating 100 years of leadership in tractors—having acquired its first tractors in 1918. As they celebrate this important milestone, they are looking back on their history, reaffirming their commitment to global agriculture and food production, and envisioning an even more innovative future.

A History of Leadership

For nearly two centuries, John Deere has been producing innovations in farm machinery, helping its customers feed the world. But for the past 100 years, John Deere tractors have been the machines that best portrayed agricultural productivity. In this centennial year of the tractor business, we are excited to innovate digital tools that allow even more farmers to access the machinery they need.

Learn more

Commitment to the Community

Throughout its history, John Deere has helped customers meet the challenge of feeding the world through advanced products and services. As global population and demand for food continue to grow, they are focused on improving the lives of smallholders farmers by increasing their agricultural production and use of mechanization, thus helping create distinctive and sustainable solutions for world hunger.

Learn more

A Future of Innovation

As represented by their involvement in the ICT4D Conference, John Deere is committed to ideating and building solutions that will continue to serve farmers around the world. This year's application development competition seeks to involve African developers in creating the tools that will serve African farmers moving forward. John Deere has a long, impressive, and proven history—but they are just getting started.

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