In India, farmers growing crops for seed company Mahyco get a text message after they deliver their harvest, noting its weight and how much was usable – followed quickly by another text saying their money is in the bank.

That reliable flow of cash through their accounts means when a farmer goes to ask for credit, the bank is much more likely to give them a loan, said Usha Barwale Zehr, director and chief technology officer for the Maharashtra-based s...
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