Oladamola Soares is the founder and chief executive officer (CEO) of Pasture, an agricultural e-commerce platform that deals in food items processing, packaging and delivery service on a platform.
His journey as an agricultural entrepreneur started back in 2016 when he recognised the inherent challenges within the agricultural supply chain early in his career.
Determined to bridge the gap between farmers and consumers, Soares set out to create an innovative e-commerce platform that could streamline the logistics of agricultural products, making them more accessible and affordable for consumers while ensuring fair returns for farmers.
Founded in 2021, Pasture was built to provide convenience and ensure that consumers can get produce without having to encounter logistics issues.
“I wanted to create a platform that would empower farmers and transform the way agricultural products are brought to market. By integrating cutting-edge technologies into the logistics process, we aim to minimise wastage, reduce costs, and ensure the timely delivery of high-quality produce to consumers.”
“The platform gives some openness for you to decide and make your choice with prices that suit your pocket,” Soares said.
On how the company works, he said, “Pasture works online and offline. For our offline station, although we don’t operate the walk-in store, we’ve got a store where we process, package and put together our produce and sort customers’ orders before delivery.”
However, our online presence is where customers use our platform to place their orders and have them delivered to their doorsteps.
“Once you are conversant with any e-commerce platform, then using our platform will be seamless for you, from the signing-in process, selection process, payment and delivery process.”
“One thing that stands Pasture out is its payment option, it is either you pay online or on delivery. Also, because we are key to timely delivery, we always ensure that our orders that come on or before 1pm are delivered the same day, if there is going to be any delay we communicate ahead. But for perishable food we make sure orders are delivered within 24 hours,” Soares said.
He emphasised that with the impact of social media, businesses can easily engage us as more people find it an easier way to interact.
“The WhatsApp platform drives more on the wholesale end, while the app is majorly driven by our retail customers,” he said.
Soares, who is the CEO said because the platform is heavily dependent on logistics, he works with different logistics companies just to make sure customers’ orders are not delayed and time is not been wasted.
He said that Pasture can be seen as an agric e-commerce in the logistic space, for example, it is the agric-Jumia platform for perishable produce.
On its user base, he said the platform has onboarded over 200 customers, with over 50 individuals and 10 businesses actively placing orders on the app.
On challenges faced, he said apart from logistics, Pasture also encounters issues with customers as people are very personal with their money, they want to ensure that what they are paying for is exactly what they will receive during deliveries.
“90 percent of our customer base on the platform are women, some of these women are very skeptical in making their purchases by themselves either because of time, where to get some item, convenience and comfortability, they are so keen on trust for a platform like ours before they can make any purchases,” he said.
Responding to his plans for Pasture, Soares said he sees Pastures serving as a go-to platform for households across major cities in Nigeria, and also becoming a major brand serving businesses in food deliveries in the coming years.
“Our biggest plan is creating a platform for exports, whereby businesses and organisations can place orders for food items across the country and beyond,” the entrepreneur added.