10 African Tech Companies The London Stock Exchange Considers ‘Inspirational’

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Written by Peter Pedroncelli

African tech companies are making waves throughout the world, and the London Stock Exchange is not only taking notice but weighing in on firms it considers to be inspirational.

These companies are making life easier for millions of Africans, such as a Nigerian fintech firm enabling easier payments and a social enterprise using solar power to provide remote off-grid consumers in East Africa with cheap electricity.

The London Stock Exchange, in partnership with Africa Development Bank Group, CDC Group and PwC, conducted research to identify Africa’s most inspiring small and medium-sized enterprises.

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Here are 10 African tech companies that the London Stock Exchange considers ‘inspirational’.

Tizeti

Nigerian solar-powered internet service provider, Tizeti, aims to become a “Comcast for Africa”, building and operating solar-powered towers in Nigeria, while also providing residences, businesses, events and conferences with unlimited high speed broadband internet access, covering over 70 percent of Lagos. Since graduating from Y Combinator‘s Winter 2017 batch, Tizeti has installed over 7,000 public Wifi hotspots within Nigeria, with 150,000 users benefiting from their service, according to Ventureburn.

CSquared

Ugandan tech firm CSquared is aiming to address the problem of poor infrastructure that is responsible for slow and unreliable internet connections. The company developing modern telecoms networks with the understanding that open-access internet infrastructure is necessary for the development of economies and the provision of employment opportunities for the youth, according to the London Stock Exchange.

Bean Interactive

Kenyan full-service digital marketing agency Bean Interactive is another of the tech firms that have been identified by the London Stock Exchange as inspirational. The agency is a modern tech powerhouse, relying on their digital skills to plan and implement marketing campaigns for clients.

D.Light

Boosting the renewable energy sector in Kenya, D.Light offers lights and mobile phone chargers designed to be affordable for households depending on how much they earn, making it possible for poorer families to afford power. The company claims to have empowered over 90 million people and offset over 21 tons of CO2 emissions, according to their website.

Snapplify

Content and media technology company Snapplify specializes in finding the best ways to distribute digital content, with a particular focus on the education sector. The business operates in South Africa and Kenya, working with government bodies, telecoms firms and hardware providers to distribute digital content such as eBooks and mobile apps from various publishers to educational institutions and users, according to ITWeb.

London Stock Exchange
Tech firms like Snapplify are empowering students by distributing education digitally. Image – AP – Christopher Torchia

3 Wise Pixels

Nigerian creative tech agency 3 Wise Pixels offers clients a variety of services such as website and app design, branding advice, platform maintenance and even CCTV installation, with this large scope of services helping the firm to grow fast in recent years. The future appears to be bright for this ambitious company, which has plans to expand its area of operation beyond Nigeria into Kenya and Ivory Coast, according to the London Stock Exchange.

Paystack

Another of the inspirational tech firms according to the London Stock Exchange is Paystack, a Nigerian fintech startup providing payments tools to businesses across Africa. The firm is backed by Y Combinator, perhaps the world’s most powerful startup accelerator program. The Lagos-based payments company successfully raised $8 million in Series A funding in September last year, bringing its total investment to date to $10 million, according to Techcrunch.

Sea Monster Entertainment

South Africa’s Sea Monster Entertainment is a marketing company that uses animation, games and augmented reality to make a difference, with a particular focus around financial education and entrepreneurship. The company has ambitious plans to open an office in London in the next five years, according to the London Stock Exchange.

M-Kopa Solar

M-Kopa Solar, a social-enterprise startup, uses solar to reach remote off-grid consumers in East Africa with cheap electricity, which is particularly useful in rural areas thanks to pay-as-you-go add-on electronic products. The firm provides affordable means for users to buy solar products on credit and build a creditworthiness and profile that will enable the purchase of more products over time, according to this press release.

Helios Towers

Helios Towers has built one of Africa’s largest portfolios of independently operated telecoms towers, enabling expanded use of mobile phones on the continent and helping to support economies. The company’s network includes over 6,500 sites across Ghana, Tanzania, the Republic of Congo and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In DRC alone, Helios Towers is in the process of improving mobile infrastructure and connectivity for six million people by upgrading and building backbone sites covering over 1118 miles, according to ITWebAfrica.