Biggest Emerging Markets Startup Competition Hosting Africa Summit In December

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Written by Peter Pedroncelli

The Seedstars Africa Summit will see the best tech startup talent from around the African continent gather in Tanzania this December.

The fourth annual Seedstars Africa Summit will take place between Dec. 11-13 in Dar Es Salaam, with all of the winners of the country-based Seedstars World competitions throughout Africa attending the event, according to iAfrikan.

Seedstars World, the world’s biggest startup competition in emerging markets, holds these competitions in 19 startup ecosystems across Africa before winners are selected in each country to take part in a grand final.

The winner of the competition in each African startup ecosystem will join other Seedstars country-winners from across the globe at the final event in Switzerland during April next year, where they will deliver pitches that could potentially earn them up to $1 million in equity investments and prizes, according to Seedstars.

The Seedstars Africa Summit serves as a platform through which tech entrepreneurs in Africa and around the world are given the chance to network, with startups from the 19 African countries involved in the Seedstars competition benefiting from the initiative and exposure.

The regional conference will see disruptive panels, networking sessions and inspirational talks from top entrepreneurs, as well as pitches from the Seedstars country-winners.

Winning startups will gather at the Seedstars Africa Summit. Photo - Seedstars
Winning startups will gather at the Seedstars Africa Summit. Photo – Seedstars

Seedstars launched a new tech incubator in Tanzania this July, with Dar Es Salaam becoming the fifth Seedspace hub in Africa, according to Ventureburn.

The Tanzanian hub is run by Seedstars in partnership with Omidyar Network, the Silicon Valley impact investment firm established by Pierre Omidyar, the founder of eBay.

The Dar Es Salaam Seedspace is the fifth on the African continent, after the launches of the company’s Cairo Seedspace in April this year and Cape Town in June., with two further incubators in Lagos, Nigeria and Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire.

Last year’s Seedstars Africa Summit took place on Dec. 14 in Mozambique, according to ITWebAfrica.

Seedstars country winners have already been selected from Zimbabwe, Egypt, Tunisia, Ghana, Morocco, Rwanda, Libya, Uganda, Senegal, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Mozambique, Bissau, Angola and Nigeria, according to Seedstars.

The only remaining countries who still have to select a winner are South Africa, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Botswana, Ethiopia and Tanzania, with their finals set to take place over the next two months.

Africa Summit following success in Switzerland

The startups gathering in Dar Es Salaam will be motivated by the fact that an African startup won the entire competition earlier this year, coming up against competition from South America, the Middle East and Asia.

In April, Ghanaian agritech startup Agrocenta emerged as the 2018 Seedstars World Summit winner in Lausanne, Switzerland, earning a $500,000 investment from Seedstars as a result, according to Techmoran.

AgroCenta has developed a solution which empowers smallholder farmers through innovative technology.

They have done this by connecting smallholder farmers to an online market while creating a transportation and logistics solution that enables these farmers to sell their products and deliver them seamlessly.

The agritech firm was one of four African tech startups selected among the 12 finalists from the original group of companies representing the African continent.

The three others were GiftedMom from Cameroon, Medsaf from Nigeria, and South Africa’s EMGuidance.