Gambia Tech Project is a commendable project that contributes to the development of the technology ecosystem in The Gambia. It provides networking opportunities for young entrepreneurs while playing a crucial role in training the next generation of technology leaders in Africa.

Gambia Tech Project is a program launched in 2021 by the French Embassy, in collaboration with the cultural center Alliance Française de Banjul. It aims to foster and actively participate in the development of a tech ecosystem that provides opportunities and facilitates innovations for young Gambian entrepreneurs.

Hosted by Alliance Française de Banjul, it is coordinated by project manager Boubacar D. Coly. It has a dedicated incubation space and a publicly accessible technology lab, where entrepreneurs can access various resources and services, such as training, workshops, events, mentoring, advice, and funding.

The project offers "young entrepreneurs a unique opportunity to achieve their goals through technology. Our main objectives are to provide quality human resources and entrepreneurs in The Gambia, because we have very creative people, but the problem lies in their limited vision," said Boubacar Coly in 2021.

Gambia Tech Project’s stated goal is to support and coach up to  50 people and incubate, accelerate, and finance up to 10 startups yearly. It creates business networking opportunities and usually organizes two major tech-entrepreneurship events every year.

Among the Gambia Tech Project's initiatives is the Gambia Tech Entrepreneurship Program. This program supports entrepreneurs who have an idea or already have a business in the fields of agritech, edtech, fintech, multimedia, creative arts, sustainable solutions, healthtech, smart cities, and information and data sciences, among others. The registration phase for the 2024 edition was launched on October 16 and will close on November 5, 2023. 

Gambia Tech Project has also supported several other initiatives, including the Fireside Chat and Pitching Competition, which was hosted in January 2023 by Amie Jack, Product Manager at Microsoft.

To date, the Gambia Tech Project has assisted 275 entrepreneurs, supported 60 viable projects, and incubated 10 startups. These include Hightech Show, which promotes digital literacy through media and content creation, and Green Waste Initiative, a company specializing in the production and sale of fuels made from solid organic and agricultural waste.

Melchior Koba

Posted On lundi, 23 octobre 2023 13:50 Written by

Artificial intelligence has gained enormous ground in recent years, enhancing the power of existing tech solutions. In Africa, Dumebi Okwechime leverages that technology to develop affordable and flexible banking products for all types of businesses. 

Dumebi Okwechime (photo) is the founder and Chief Data Scientist of Izifin, a provider of integrated finance solutions that enable all businesses to harness data to serve their customers better. 

The Nigerian-born founder has an impressive academic and professional background in artificial intelligence and data science. In 2011, he got his PhD in Computer Vision from the University of Surrey in the UK and an MBA from Imperial College London, in 2015.

During his doctoral studies, he created an artificial intelligence platform that determines how interested participants are in analyzed conversations based solely on their non-verbal social signals. 

He founded Izifin in 2021. Through that company, he offers flexible and affordable embedded banking products to all types of businesses, whatever their size or sector.

The company offers three main products. The first is IZI KYC, which enables fintechs to validate their users through facial detection, proof-of-life, facial matches, and identity verification. The second is IZI BNPL, which enables companies to offer Buy now, pay later (BNPL) services to their clients.  The third product is IZI MERCHANT, an embedded banking solution that enables businesses to digitalize processes, easily manage inventories, perform cashier services, and manage customer portfolios.

On October 5, 2023, Izifin and 10 other startups were selected to join the Google for Startups Accelerator: AI First program. The company will benefit from $350,000 in Google Cloud credits and access Google's expertise and support in artificial intelligence.

Prior to founding Izifin, the entrepreneur worked for major companies such as Siemens, where he was a technical consultant and software engineer between 2003 and 2004. After years in academia, he worked for companies such as fintech Renmoney, where he was Chief Decision Scientist (2019-2020), and logistics startup Kobo360, where he was Chief Data Officer (2020-2021).

Melchior Koba

Posted On lundi, 23 octobre 2023 12:19 Written by

Recruiting digital and IT talents can be a significant challenge for companies. To alleviate this burden, Mustapha Moutout is pioneering a tailored recruitment approach in Morocco.

Mustapha Moutout (photo) is the founder and managing director of Novancy One, a recruitment agency specializing in digital and IT professions. After completing his classes préparatoires aux grandes écoles (CPEG) in 2003, he enrolled at the High National School for Computer Science and Systems Analysis (ENSIAS), where he obtained a Master's degree in IT in 2006.

The Moroccan-born entrepreneur founded Novancy One in 2012. His recruitment company specializes in sourcing, assessment, coaching, and training services. Based in Morocco, it has regional offices in France, Côte d'Ivoire, the USA, the UK, Bulgaria and Tunisia. It positions itself as a strategic partner for companies seeking to strengthen their teams with qualified, motivated talent. It also organizes tailor-made events such as Africa IT Days, a virtual recruitment and experience-sharing forum, to strengthen team bonds and attract top talent. Today, the company has over 100 satisfied customers and places over 300 candidates each year.

Mustapha Moutout's professional career began in 2006, as a consulting analyst for Inetum, a digital services and solutions company, and an international group that helps companies and institutions capitalize on digital opportunities. He then joined Société Générale, where he spent two years as a project manager in analysis and organization.

In 2008, he spent three months working for Ribatis, a Casablanca-based digital operator, as a senior consultant before joining Deloitte Consulting in August of the same year. There, he worked as a consultant in the financial services sector. In 2011, he became Strategic Project Manager at Arsen Consulting, a consulting firm where he worked until the creation of Novancy One.

Melchior Koba

Posted On vendredi, 20 octobre 2023 14:27 Written by

Over the past few years, the world has undergone major technological changes. Africa is among the latest to embrace this revolution. It is also one of the most dynamic currently, thanks notably to contributions from actors like Malawi’s Mzuzu E-Hub.

Mzuzu E-Hub is an entrepreneurship, technology, and innovation hub that provides business development support services to firms and emerging entrepreneurs in Malawi. Founded in 2017 by business development professional Wangiwe Kambuzi, it aims to help entrepreneurs acquire the knowledge and skills they need to create and grow their businesses.

The center offers business incubation programs that provide personalized coaching, access to funding, training, and mentoring to selected entrepreneurs, as well as technology integration programs that facilitate access and use of digital technologies for entrepreneurs. 

Mzuzu E-Hub also offers a flagship incubation program called Bizcubation. It is a six-month program that helps its portfolio companies establish a sound business model and market strategy enabling them to commercialize their idea and measure social impact. It gives entrepreneurs access to investors and helps them build up an important network of contacts. The program has already graduated 345 emerging entrepreneurs across eight cohorts, with 46.5% female participation since its inception.

Through its Media and Information Literacy Education (MILE) program, the center offers Malawians access to digital skills training, including computer programming, digital marketing, photography and videography, graphic design, and IT. The program has enabled 1,400 community members to learn about existing digital technologies and internet safety.

Mzuzu E-Hub also organizes networking events that connect entrepreneurs with peers, experts, investors, and potential partners. It also provides coworking and meeting spaces that offer a conducive environment for collaborative work and innovation.

The innovation hub has an undeniable impact in Malawi. With the support of partners like the World Bank, Digital Malawi, Make-IT in Africa, Lenovo Digital Opportunity Trust, and AfriLabs, among others, it has trained 572 young people in digital professions and supported 345 entrepreneurs. In 2019, it was awarded the SII Malawi Community Builder Award. Two years later, in 2021, it won the Afrilabs Capacity Building Award-Business Development award. 

Melchior Koba

Posted On vendredi, 20 octobre 2023 14:09 Written by

With his company Excel@Uni, he helps students from disadvantaged backgrounds to get university degrees to succeed in life. The company has earned him several awards.  

Lungelo Linda Gumede (photo) is the co-founder and CEO of Excel@Uni, a company that uses technology to help scholarship students from disadvantaged backgrounds succeed in their studies and prepare for the world of work. 

Born in South Africa, he studied at the University of Cape Town (UCT), where he obtained a Bachelor's degree in Finance and Accounting in 2012. He is also a graduate of the Graduate School of Business, where he earned a master's degree in finance in 2015.

While still studying, Lungelo began working at the University of Cape Town's Graduate School of Business as a corporate finance tutor. He soon became a lecturer, teaching corporate finance to students in the MBA program and financial risk management to students in the MCom program.

His most significant impact lies in his role as co-founder and CEO of Excel@Uni. The company was founded, in 2013, by Lungelo Linda Gumede, Ludwick Marishane, and Lesedi Makena. In partnership with several universities, it offers support and development programs for students. It also offers students mentoring, tutoring, scholarship management, skills development, and job preparation services. It is one of the 25 African startups selected for the 2023 cohort of the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund program.

In addition to his duties at Excel@Uni, Lungelo Linda Gumede is also a mentor at Akro Accelerate, which provides venture funding and advisory services for entrepreneurs. In 2013, he worked as a business research consultant for South Africa's state-owned Technology Innovation Agency.

With Excel@Uni, he received a lot of recognition. In 2017, the company was selected as a finalist in the SAB Foundation Social Innovation Awards. In 2018, it won second place in the inaugural IBM South Africa Startup Accelerator pitch competition.

Melchior Koba

Posted On jeudi, 19 octobre 2023 17:19 Written by

Through its commitment to technology education, skills development, and entrepreneurship, Mt Kenya Hub promotes inclusive economic growth in Kenya and across Africa.

Founded in 2015 by Savio Wambugu, a software developer, Mt Kenya Hub is a key player in Kenya's technology ecosystem. Located in the heart of the country, this innovation and incubation hub is dedicated to training, skills development, and mentoring for young entrepreneurs. It is a meeting place for all those interested in innovation.

Mt Kenya Hub offers a physical platform to support entrepreneurs and startups. Its events, training, and entrepreneurship programs transform ideas into job-creating businesses and add value to the African economy in general, and Kenya in particular. One of its flagship programs is Mt Kenya Innovation Week Acceleration, an intensive six-month program designed to help entrepreneurs and innovators grow their businesses and take them to the next level.

An example of its notable initiatives is Mt Kenya Innovation and Investment Week, an annual event that aims to bring together inventors, entrepreneurs, and innovators for a week of discussions, panels, conferences, exhibitions, and hackathons. The event gives young people, startups and women access to fundamental knowledge, digital tools, and platforms to enable them to become better innovators, entrepreneurs, and technology leaders.

In addition to its incubation and acceleration activities, Mt Kenya Hub offers an innovative and user-friendly coworking space to provide an environment conducive to meeting, networking, and collaboration. It provides services ranging from small-scale investigative research to large-scale data collection and analysis. It also offers consulting services in several fields.

The center also organizes competitions to reward the best entrepreneurs and encourage innovation. In 2022, its Mt Kenya Innovation Week Awards challenge awarded $3,000 to three of the best innovators. It was then in its second edition.

Melchior Koba

Posted On mercredi, 18 octobre 2023 14:09 Written by

Aklilu Tadesse is an innovative and ambitious entrepreneur contributing to the development of the logistics sector in Ethiopia. His company Garri Logistics is supported by Google through various programs.

Aklilu Tadesse (photo) is the CEO and one of the co-founders of Garri Logistics, an Ethiopian startup that facilitates domestic freight and digitalizes supply chain processes. He graduated from the University of Bahir Dar, Ethiopia, with a Bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering.

In 2020, he launched Garri Logistics, together with Daniel Temesgen and Michael Andersland. The idea is to enable shippers and importers to easily and reliably move their goods anywhere in the country, using approved carriers. With that in mind, Garri Logistics takes care of all aspects of the supply chain, from requesting quotes to delivering paperwork, including real-time transport tracking. The logistics company is also beneficial to professional drivers, who can earn more money per trip, have a safer and more flexible work experience, and develop better relationships with shippers. It strives to find multiple, round-trip routes to minimize empty miles and maximize user revenue.

In 2022, Garri Logistics was selected as one of the 60 startups in the second cohort of the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund for Africa program. More recently, on October 5, 2023, the company was selected to participate in the Google for Startups Accelerator: AI First program.

Prior to Garri Logistics, Aklilu Tadesse was a Business Systems Analyst at Construction Solutions. In 2006, he became a Quality Engineer at Flintstone Engineering, an Ethiopian construction company. As a senior consultant with GIZ Ethiopia, he has helped over 100 construction companies achieve ISO 9001 QMS certification, and trained over 2,500 people in leadership, project, operations, and quality management as well as process analysis and optimization.

Melchior Koba

Posted On mercredi, 18 octobre 2023 14:04 Written by

According to the UN, climate change is one of the major challenges of our times. More so in Africa, which is bearing the highest cost despite accounting for the lowest carbon emissions. In Ghana, a tech entrepreneur wants to contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions, therefore helping combat climate change. Through Solar Taxi, he ensures a clean and sustainable environment with taxis that use renewable energy. 

Ghanaian tech entrepreneur George Kwadwo Appiah (photo) is the CEO and one of the co-founders of Solar Taxi, a local transport services company offering solar-powered vehicles. 

He graduated from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), in 2016, earning a master's degree in renewable energy technology. The same year, he earned a master’s in business administration from the Edinburgh Business School.

His company was founded in 2018. It provides locally assembled electric motorcycles, tricycles, and cars, as well as access to solar charging stations. Doing so, it aims to reduce air pollution caused by gasoline-powered vehicles, offer Ghanaians an affordable transport alternative, and create jobs for young people.

It also has a training academy where Ghanaians are taught how to drive and maintain electric vehicles. On September 21, 2023, it was announced among the selectees for the Google for Startups Accelerator: Climate Change. 

Currently, its CEO, George Kwadwo Appiah, is a research assistant at KNUST's The Energy Center. In 2014, he founded Ghana Hubs Network, a network of Ghanaian innovation centers. He is also the CEO of QuadSolar, a solar system installation company, and Executive Director of Ghana Tech Lab, an ecosystem that serves as a digital innovation space aimed at accelerating digital skills and digital entrepreneurship in Ghana.

In 2015, he co-founded Kumasi Hive, a coworking, training, and incubation space that aims to promote social and technological entrepreneurship in Ghana. Kumasi Hive offers young innovators access to equipment, mentors, training, and funding opportunities to develop their ideas and solutions. Solar Taxi was founded through Kumasi Hive.

George Kwadwo Appiah received the Academic/Research Excellence Award (student category) in 2014. His company, Solar Taxi, has also attracted international attention. It was featured by The Org network as one of three African electromobility startups to watch in 2023.

Melchior Koba

Posted On lundi, 16 octobre 2023 13:13 Written by

Far from being just a workspace, Com'Work is a community of like-minded entrepreneurs who want to change the Comoros. It offers personalized support tailored to each beneficiary startup’s development stage. 

Comoros Coworking (Com'Work) is a modern, creative coworking space and incubator located in downtown Moroni. It was created in 2018 by young entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs.

The incubator offers a variety of services to professionals, associations, and creative agencies wishing to work in a stimulating and collaborative environment. It has 4 individual offices, a coworking open space with 10 workstations, a meeting room, a relaxation room, and two furnished studios.

It regularly organizes training courses, expert meetings, and meet-ups to encourage exchange, networking, and capacity-building among entrepreneurs. It also assists project leaders in their search for financing.

The center offers both pre-incubation and incubation programs. Its pre-incubation program supports entrepreneurs in the process of moving from idea to action. It can be delivered face-to-face over three months or online over six months. The program consists of educational content, thematic workshops, and daily individual coaching.

The incubation program, meanwhile, enables entrepreneurs to explore the market to validate their business model, test the market to acquire the first customers, establish and commit to a financing strategy, and build the start-up team in line with the target market. Program beneficiaries have privileged access to financing and tailor-made training.

In addition to these two programs, Com'Work also offers an à la carte support program to help entrepreneurs develop their projects at their own pace and according to their needs. At the end of the programs, the incubator offers business consulting services in several areas of expertise.

Melchior Koba

Posted On vendredi, 13 octobre 2023 12:53 Written by

Ms. Amira Cheniour pushes the boundaries of innovation to heal the planet and improve the lives of farmers. With Seabex, she demonstrates that agriculture can be a promising sector for Tunisia and Africa.

She got the Seabex idea during a trip to southern Tunisia, where she met a farmer who lost a large part of his date crop to drought. She then decided to put her skills at the service of agriculture, a vital sector for her country, but one facing many challenges. 

The company has developed a remote AI-based irrigation monitoring and control system that uses sensors installed on the farms to determine the water and fertilizer needs, enabling farmers to act efficiently. 

Seabex also offers a Software as a Service service to farmers, who can access data and recommendations on their smartphones or computers. 

Since its creation, Seabex has enjoyed remarkable success, both nationally and internationally. The startup has won several prestigious awards, such as the Orange Prize for Social Entrepreneurship in Africa and the Middle East in 2017, and the Innovation Trophy at the Agreen Startup 2023 competition in the category of startups that collaborate with chambers of agriculture.  It was also selected as one of the beneficiaries of the Google for Startups Accelerator: Climate Change program for the Middle East and Africa.

Amira Cheniour began her professional career in 2011 at Orange Tunisia, where she completed an end-of-study internship. She then worked for software publisher I.T.Grapes between 2011 and 2020. She launched Seabex, in 2015, with Taher Mestiri, the founder of I.T.Grapes. 

Internationally, she is celebrated for her exceptional career and leadership. She was voted Star-Female Entrepreneur at the 2017 G20 in Berlin and received the Ye Star-Female Entrepreneur award at the Global Inclusion Awards program held in 2017 in Berlin, Germany.

In 2018, she was the winner of the Women in Africa and Social Entrepreneur of the Year in MENA issued by Orange Tunisia. She was selected among 6 winners at the Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2019 final in Paris. She was also on the 2020 edition of the Top 100 Women Entrepreneurs in Tunisia published by The Next Women Tunisia network.

Melchior Koba

Posted On vendredi, 13 octobre 2023 12:11 Written by
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