Back to All Events

Alessandro Colafranceschi, Tim Willis: The AgriTech Revolution

Alessandro Colafranceschi, Tim Willis


Heavy Chef and Workshop17 present an exciting new event in the agricultural heart of South Africa, Paarl. In the stunning venue of Tabakhuis, the traditional building recently converted into an inspiring collaborative workspace by Wokshop17, Heavy Chef is hosting a panel of AgriTech speakers who are changing the world of agriculture with their disruptive new businesses. Investors, farmers, technologists and entrepreneurs are invited to attend this landmark occasion. From Aerobotics, nominated in 2018 as one of the Top 5 Most Exciting Startups In SA, Tim Willis will kick things off with his view on how Aerobotics is using drone technology to shape the way farmers across the world look at data. Then, Alessandro Colafranceschi, cofounder of Tillo App, will reveal how a simple mobile application is giving control of information back to farmers.

About The Speakers & Topics

Alessandro Colafranceschi: What I Learned In Twelve Months Researching 100 Farmers Using AgriTech

Alessandro Colafranceschi is the CEO and co-founder of TilloApp. Alessandro started his career in the beer industry in 1992, working at Birra Peroni (the largest Italian brewer) as Trade Marketing analyst, and later served as UK Country manager in London where he managed to make Peroni beer the fastest selling export lager in the country – then bought by SAB Miller. Alessandro designed and build his first corporate website for Peroni in 1995, and in 1999 he joined the founding team of the most successful startup in Italy at that time, Kataweb, where he was in charge of eCommerce and online advertising.

In 2004 he moved into digital banking when he joined UniCredit Banca to lead the development of internet and mobile banking for the banking Group in Italy and in Europe. In 2014 Alessandro joined Standard Bank Group serving as Group Executive for Digital Banking and eCommerce.

Alessandro was voted among the top 50 most innovative, influential and powerful people in European digital financial services by the Retail Banker International in 2014. Alessandro was a visiting professor at the University of Bologna (the oldest university in the world history) at the Industrial Economics Dept from 2009 to 2011, teaching a course on how to maximize the impact of the Digital economy.

Alessandro co-founded TilloApp in 2017, an innovative agri-tech startup operating in South Africa and in Russia. Alessandro lives in Johannesburg, he is married with three kids.

Tim Willis: Has The Time Come For Farmers To Fully Embrace AgriTech?

Tim Willis is the CFO of Aerobotics, nominated one of South Africa’s Most Exciting Startups. Previously, Tim worked at both Uber and Deloitte. He recently managed Analytics & Strategy for the Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) Central Operations Team based out of Amsterdam, Netherlands for Uber.

Previously, Tim led operations for the Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) Uber team, which included growing the driver-partner supply base, monitoring the marketplace and providing the business with analytics support. Before joining Uber, Tim worked as an Audit Manager in Financial Services audit at Deloitte, serving 2 of the top 4 major banks in South Africa.

This Heavy Chef Learning Experience is brought to you by:


There will be food and refreshments, complimentary wine, courtesy of Backsberg, juices and teas courtesy of Sir Fruit, coffee courtesy of Vida.

If you are considering drinking on the evening, please consider using Taxify (you get R150 off your first ride on a Heavy Chef event night, and R80 off Heavy Chef event trips using the promo code HC2019).