Closing off on its second year the accelerator programme, Startupbootcamp AfriTech, culminated with Demo Day where they showcased the next wave of African innovation with 10 start-ups at the cutting-edge of digital innovation taking to the stage.
Key announcements made to celebrate the culmination of the 13-week intensive accelerator programme included:
Multiple Pilot Agreements (PoCs) signed with the corporate sponsors
On stage, the startups announced multiple agreements that had been reached with corporates, investors and government entities.Digitechannounced their partnership with SAHAM, the largest insurance company in West and Central Africa, servicing over 20 countries.
South African-grown solution,Lülaannounced partnerships with several large corporate offices in the Cape Town area, who will now be using a Lula shuttle for employees. These corporates include Aurecon, V&A Waterfront, RCS and Old Mutual, with a collective employee base of 12 000+. The City of Cape Town is the most congested in South Africa and Lula aims to change that with their Mobility-as-a-Service platform (MaaS).
Mpost, a patented technology that enables any mobile phone user to transform their phone into a unique mobile postal address and mobile postal box. The team shared early pilot discussions in 4 African countries and demonstrated a Total Addressable Market at 450 million customers across the continent. They are in the process of closing multiple deals with both corporate and government entities. In 127 years, the Kenyan government has provided 400k postal addresses. In just 2 years, Mpost has provided 40 000 users with postal addresses and processed 22k deliveries.
Brandbook,is a decentralised rewards programme that allows you to earn points by uploading any purchase receipt from any shop. They reported that their pilot conducted with Unilever result in 1000+ receipts being analysed with transactions amounting to R21 million in just 10 days. They announced a PoC with corporate leader and sponsor RCS.
Pago,is mobile network operator driven online payments processor that enables any unbanked smart phone user to make payments online using airtime. They have integrated with Mastercard’s Masterpass API that enables users to pay online to 250 000+ merchants in Africa and 20 million merchants worldwide.
Akiba, a solution that is making it easier and more rewarding for the 6.7Million accessible tech-savvy millennials in SA to set, manage and meet their personal financial goals, announced a PoC with RCS.
Kudimoney,is making it possible to bank for free with no unnecessary fees, over the last 9 months, Kudimoney ran a beta version with 10 000 people that ended up saving more than $300 000 in goal-based savings. They have a waiting list of more than 30 000 users.
Partnership with Uprise Africa
Apart from the key startup announcements of the day, Startupbootcamp AfriTech themselves announced a new collaboration with Uprise Africa.
“Our Demo Day is about showcasing our incredible start-ups from this year’s cohort. And linking them to potential investors. As part of the focus of supporting startups, we are excited to announce our partnership with Uprise. Africa the first Equity Crowdfunding platform in SA to link great startups to alternative funding solutions,” announcedZachariah George, co-founder and CIO of Startupbootcamp AfriTech.
First time incubating a corporate start-up
“This year we validated that our accelerator can help corporates scale internal innovation capabilities and turn those into spin-out companies, like the startup Sizanani that participated in our accelerator programme,” shares Philip Kiracofe, CEO and Co-founder of SBC AfriTech.
The SBC Afritech 2018 startup cohort included for the first time, a corporate startup from Unilever. The company enrolled a small internal team with the aim to reignite “the founders’ mentality” into their innovation thinking as well as integrate a truly “lean start-up” approach to new product development. The agile startup Sizanani, a Stokvel solution for bulk buying, was created and is now only 10 weeks old and already a post-revenue startup post the accelerator.
“We’re were very excited to be able to trial and pilot this approach to demonstrate that innovative corporations with the proper resources and the proper support can take internal ideas and develop that as innovation capability within the organisation,” said Kiracofe.
“The difference between being successful and being significant could not have been amplified more than in the founders of this year’s cohort. And we are so optimistic that that trend will continue to grow next year,” shared Zach George, CIO and Co-Founder of SBC AfriTech. “This year’s start-ups proved how important it is to not just be successful, but to be significant, to build solutions above and beyond yourself and your community – build a legacy.”