Monday, September 25

Agropartnerships investors blow hot, threaten to sue platform for breach of contract

Investors of Agropartnerships, an investment platform powered by Farmforte, have threatened to involve lawyers and security personnel in the course of following up on matured investments unpaid by the platform.

These investors appear to have run out of patience upon the lapse of the 3-7 days ultimatum which Agropartnerships said would be used to pay investors with one to five units of the cashew 04 cycle which matured on the 15th of December as those with over five units have refused to wait until April next year to access their funds

Nairametrics had earlier reported how investors of the platform lamented inaccessibility to their investment funds a few days before the Yuletide celebration.

Meanwhile, the investors have continued to pitch their voices on social media with regards to the failure of the firm to pay investors their matured cycle and in fear that the situation may turn out like other crowdfunding platforms that have failed in the past.

Lamenting on Instagram, an investor who goes by the handle, @pelumine said investment returns still haven’t been made as of 28th December 2021 despite having to wait for over two weeks.

According to the user, “When we transferred our money it was with ease there was no delay whatsoever nor anything ascending about it. After today if I don’t get my refund back I will be forced to call them (Agropartnerships) out and have my lawyer serve you guys a letter. They should send me my capital back if they don’t want to pay me my interest. At least let me have what I invested.”

Elsewhere, some groups of investors have threatened to come together under one umbrella to sue the platform for breach in the contract as against what was earlier stated and accusing the platform of not communicating properly with investors.

How Agropartnerships is addressing the situation

In a bid to address the issue, the platform had forwarded a mail stating that payment will be made in batches to those with 1-5 units of investment within three to 7 days while the funds of those with 5-10 units will be reinvested and payment made in April 2022.

The mail read in part, “Due to these disruptions (challenges faced with the Cashew 04 cycle), we regret to inform you that payouts for the Cashew 04 cycle can only be done in batches over a period up until April 2022. We encourage all partners, especially our long-standing partners who have trusted us over the years, to be patient with us as we extend your payouts until April 2022. Your funds continue to be safe with us, as our operations remain strong.

For the first batch, we will payout partners with less than 5 units (which accounts for more than 60% of the cycle population) within 7 days, in ascending order (which we have already started). Afterwards, we will announce the process for the next batch.”

While investors within the stipulated category have attested to receiving their funds, a host of others who fall within the same category said they are yet to receive their funds as of the time of this report.

Reacting to this, an investor, @fevisheve said, “How long will it take to get paid for my 4unit. Please pay this money or hasten the process. I’m tired of hoping.”

Another investor, @miide_og wrote, “It’s been over a week since you said people with 1 unit would be paid. What’s happening?

Also, the platform promised that the Co-CEOs will be having a virtual town hall meeting with esteemed partners to address all concerns and answer questions, adding that details of this would be communicated in advance.

It added, “We have doubled our customer service team and service lines, although still not enough due to the high volume of requests at the moment. They will be available all through the period.”

As we understand many of us have unique situations, especially in this end-of-year season, we have created a quick response and escalation email address dedicated to hearing your needs and attending to your urgent queries; [email protected]”

We will provide timely updates across our various channels to the entire community with regards to our progress, making this situation as inclusive as possible going forward.

Debhola01, another investor said, “You guys sent a mail last week & shared 8 phone numbers for a swift response. All the lines are either switched off or invalid, I’m yet to receive my payment since Dec.16th. Be assured that I’m resuming in your office tomorrow morning.

Nairametrics also confirmed this as all efforts to reach the platform have been futile.

Yet another investment has matured

In the middle of all this, another investment by the platform (rice project quarterly) matured on the 29th of December 2021 adding to the owing list.

In a recent mail signed by Osazuwa Osayi and Uyi Wense, Agropartnerships stated, “We are grateful and appreciate your participation in the rice project. With the progress we are making on the project, we are indeed optimistic about 2022 and your place as significant players in the rice value chain in Nigeria.

We are happy to confirm that you will receive your rice project quarterly interest payout from December 29th 2021. To avoid any errors and mix up with other payouts, we will be running payouts manually.”

Noting that the customer service will process requests within 2-7 working days, it added, “To access your rice project quarter interest payout, investors should ensure that fund balance is reflected on the dashboard though the withdrawal button is currently inactive, and send an email with exact interest.

However, while the platform says the ongoing slow down on the cashew cycle would not affect payment for the rice which is 10 per cent quarterly, some experts say the effect may be extended pending payouts for the rice project and others in the future.