Economic growth depends on the jobs, innovation, new ideas, and fresh thinking that entrepreneurs and small businesses bring to their societies. Yet Africa has lagged behind its peers in innovation-related measures. This makes finding and scaling, innovation-related new businesses a priority, with accelerator programs filling a crucial gap.
Ten startups from across the continent have been selected for the 2022 Telecel Group Africa Startup Initiative Program (ASIP) Accelerator Program, powered by leading tech accelerator Startupbootcamp (SBC) AfriTech, an African based and lead multi-corporate- backed tech accelerator that specializes in unlocking and growing Pan- African tech opportunities.
The announcement was made following a rigorous two-day selection process held in Dakar, Senegal, on 9-10 March, with 20 semi-finalists pitching to judges and stakeholders. In total, 2 295 applications were received from 58 countries.
“Senegal is committed to driving innovation and entrepreneurship across our country so that we can take our place among Africa’s top ten startup ecosystems. For the past four years, we have provided specific support and assistance for startups in the form of finance, incubation and acceleration. We are inspired by the energy and commitment that the ten finalists bring, and we look forward to their growth and future impact,”
said the honorable Papa Amadou Sarr, the presiding Senegalese Minister and General Delegate for Entrepreneurship in the Presidency.
“Entrepreneurship and innovation represent Africa’s best possible investment for future sustainability. SBC’s entrepreneurs are working to solve critical challenges, improving lives and communities. More than 88% of our 40 alumni are still operating and have raised more than $90 million in funding, showing that our program is making a difference,”
said Philip Kiracofe, CEO and Chief Disruptor, Startupbootcamp AfriTech. Startupbootcamp runs accelerator programs, with SBC AfriTech as the African leg of a global family of industry-focused accelerators.
“At Telecel, we believe technology is a catalyst for change and solutions, and that’s why we incentivize and support innovative startups with the tools they need to reach the next level. With this program, we are investing in our future leaders. African entrepreneurs are best placed to help the world tackle pressing challenges such as climate change, inequality, food security, and healthcare, because they come from communities who are directly affected by these issues,”
said Eleanor Azar, Executive Deputy of the Board of Directors at Telecel Group and Board Director of the African Startup Initiative Program.
The current cohort was selected based on the impact of their proposed solution, scalability, vision, and whether they had the necessary skills to succeed in their markets, quality of leadership, commitment, market timing, growth potential, and comparative advantage. Participants will receive intensive three-month coaching and support program to accelerate their growth and benefits worth US$750 000. The program will take place in Dakar, Senegal and startups will be hosted by DER/FJ at the D-hub, – a space commissioned by the General Delegation for the Rapid Entrepreneurship of Women and Youth (DER/FJ) and established by the President of the Republic of Senegal, His Excellency Macky Sall.
ASIP announced the first cohort of ten companies in 2021 and runs the accelerator program annually.
We are honored to include the following ten startups in the 2022 ASIP Accelerator Program.
Agrodata (Nigeria) has invented an IoT-enabled smart hive to assist fruit and vegetable farmers with pollination requirements to support year-round food availability. They were selected in the 2021 cohort but will be completing the program this year.
Crowdyvest is an impact-driven fintech platform that creates financial solutions for long-term growth and financial freedom. Crowdyvest has over 140 000 user accounts, with over US$30 million raised for projects and 30 impact projects supported.
eCampus provides a machine learning platform for parents and educators to track the progress of learners, meet their needs, and improve learning outcomes.
Ecomak Recyclers is reusing plastic waste as long-lasting, eco-friendly, durable and low maintenance construction material. Their plastic bricks and poles are 30% cheaper than conventional concrete bricks and wood timber.
Neural Labs Africa is using AI-enabled medical imaging (NeuralSight™) for real-time diagnosis. NeuralSight can identify, label and highlight over 20 respiratory, heart and breast diseases and pathologies, including pneumonia, tuberculosis, COVID-19, emphysema, and more. This technology will reduce Africa’s disease burden and hospital workloads, with better patient outcomes and democratized access to healthcare.
Parc Smart helps drivers find and reserve a parking space using their smartphone before they reach their destination, reducing traffic, pollution, and stress.
Powerstove Energy has developed an IoT-enabled smokeless stove that reduces fuel costs and greenhouse gas emissions. The stove generates enough electricity to charge mobile phones and power LED lamps and appliances. The IoT system tracks and sends carbon data so that carbon credits can be generated.
Proxalys SAS connects fresh food producers with retailers, restaurants and service providers to build a robust e-commerce supply chain.
Qataloog offers transparent, cost-effective pricing directly to institutions using cataloguing algorithms for learning content and user search preferences. It has distributed over 10 000 books to 35 universities and colleges and has raised US$150 000 in funding.
Rural Farmers Hub offers a crop intelligence solution for farmers to manage crop health and soil nutrients with real-time farming advice delivered by SMS, voice, apps and in-person. Their intelligence solution, Capture, is being used by over 16 000 farmers in northern Nigeria.
Vooli Mobile Insurance App evaluates insurance premiums to create the most cost-effective cover.
For more information about the Africa Startup Initiative Program and the selected startups, please visit the website here.
About Startupbootcamp AfriTech
Startupbootcamp AfriTech was launched in 2017 as the first multi corporate-backed pan-African startup accelerator. We run world-class accelerator programs, working with some of the most disruptive startups on the continent. We provide access to our global network of corporate partners, investors, and mentors. For more information visit: http://bit.ly/sbcafritech
About Telecel Group
Telecel Group operates in four different lines of Business all under the telecom industry: (1) Telecel Mobile, owns and operates several mobile operators in Africa. (2) Telecel Global, offers a multitude of services to MNOs such as VOICE, SMS, DATA, IPTV, international traffic, VAS, and Quadruple play. (3) Telecel Play Application with an African identity innovating the E-Commerce. (4) Africa Startup initiative program, which targets innovative startups in the region of Africa while offering them support and guidance.
For more information on the Telecel Group program, visit http://asiprogram.com/
Der/FJ is an institution under the authority of the Presidency of the Republic of Senegal and it was launched by President Macky Sall in 2018 in order to support entrepreneurs throughout Senegal. This support is given through both financial and non-financial services, with an emphasis on sectors that include technology and innovation, hence the creation of the D-hub incubator. For more information about DER/FJ visit https://der.sn/