Who We Are
Empoderando tenderos de escasos recursos para optimizar sus negocios.
CEO & Co-Founder
Carlos Felipe Gutiérrez
COO & Co-Founder
Supply Chain Manager
Agruppa started under the name of SokoText [link to sokotext.com] as a vague idea, when five students from five different nationalities at the London School of Economics escaped the classroom to enter the Hult Prize [link to http://www.hultprize.org]– an international social entrepreneurship competition that had called for business models to tackle food insecurity in urban slums. The more we researched the problem, the more we understood that fruit and vegetable vendors in these low-income neighborhoods critically affect what people eat. Agruppa emerged motivated by the potential we saw in these micro-entrepreneurs and the opportunity to use simple technology to empower them and improve food security for their customers.
hat’s when half of our team took a plane to Kenya to prototype our vision in the slums of Nairobi. There, we experienced first-hand how hard these micro-entrepreneurs work, yet struggle to run and grow their businesses. Being caught up in a cycle of low capital and small quantities, food supply chains in slums are simply inefficient. Yet, we also experienced how grouping their demand and bringing produce straight from the farm allowed them to access wholesale prices otherwise unreachable. Even more impressively, we saw how these vendors would then often transfer the entirety of these savings to their end-consumers under their own initiative.
After the competition, our cofounder Carolina returned to her home country, Colombia, with the mission to empower these micro-entrepreneurs and their communities at the Bottom of the Pyramid. Since June 2014, Sokotext Colombia, now under the name of Agruppa, has paved its way into a new continent, adapting the model to the local context and building partnerships with key regional players, as SociaLab Colombia, an incubator of ideas with positive social impact. Our cofounder Verena joined Carolina in March 2015. Together, they are bringing the Agruppa service to low-income neighbourhoods of Bogota.
Agruppa has several mentors and advisors who support us in different fields
Project Coordinator for Acumen Latin America
Director for Agora Partnerships