Uber for Tractors is Really a Thing in Developing Countries

by Wayan Vota

You’ve probably taken an Uber, Lyft, or Grab Taxi. You may have used AirBnb. You could’ve even used Task Rabbit. This is all part of the “sharing economy,” and regardless if you think its entrepreneurial or exploitative, it is now fully part of development country economies.

The Sharing Economy Has Even Come to Agriculture

Farm machinery is never cheap, and for many smallholder farmers, a simple tractor can be beyond their capacity to own and maintain. That’s where new services are allowing farmers to rent equipment from one another, reducing the cost of ownership and increasing access to needed farm machinery.

In Nigeria and Kenya, HelloTractor is creating tractor rental entrepreneurs. In Ghana, TroTro Tractor allows tractor owners to track machines in real-time. In India, Trringo is renting out all manner of farm machinery. In the Philippines, there are nascent efforts to start farm machinery sharing programs focusing on expensive rice harvesting equipment.