Stanbic Bank_GIZ

Stanbic Bank & GIZ Partner For “NextGen Ghana Fintech Accelerator”.

Stanbic Bank and GIZ have entered into a partnership to help fast-track their journey towards scalable and sustainable, impact-oriented ventures.

Stanbic Bank and the “Make-IT in Africa” tech entrepreneurship initiative by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH have entered into a partnership to help fast-track their journey towards commercially scalable and sustainable impact-oriented ventures.

The partnership has birthed the “NextGen Fintech Accelerator“, a programme which will assist growth stage technology companies in their market validation and customer acquisition phase in Ghana. The rolling accelerator programme is focused on product validation, customer acquisition, and investment readiness.

At Stanbic Bank, we believe that experiential learning is one of the best ways to leapfrog young entrepreneurs into established businesses contributing significantly to the economic growth of the country. For this reason, since 2018, we have been investing in young entrepreneurs through work-based learning, coaching, and the provision of an enabling environment to equip young people with the skills needed for work.” Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Stanbic Bank Ghana, Kwamina K. Asomaning said at the signing of the partnership.

Ghana has revolutionized its FinTech industry to embrace the use of smartphones and applications in transactions. There are presently over 11 million active users on mobile payment systems, with banks recording over 80% of their transactions originating from electronic and digital channels.

The Bank of Ghana (BoG), which is the regulator of payment systems, reports that about 71 fintech companies operate in the country. FinTech’s have proven to be the future of banking, especially in these times of the COVID-19 Pandemic, where the use of digital payment systems is increasingly becoming mainstream. However, the Fintech Ecosystem in Ghana is at a blossoming stage, hence the need for this initiative.

Mr. Asomaning also indicated, Our priority today is to build the capacity of FinTech businesses and startups through a 6-month intensive curriculum-based training. The training will focus on reconstructing and validating the business models to scale and adhere to industry best practices. The training will also refine, test and validate their growth strategies as well as the operational framework. Ultimately, this initiative will coach and nurture the FinTechs to be investor-ready”.

The accelerator programme will run one cohort of 20 selected early-to-growth stage FinTech startups. The Joint Stanbic Bank & GIZ NextGen FinTech Accelerator” aims at contributing to UN (United Nations) Sustainable Development aims at contributing to UN Sustainable Development Goal #8 by supporting tech start-ups in the field of FinTech to help advance their solutions in the local environment.

The programme features a 6-months long intensive curriculum-based training, after which participants will engage in a Mentorship program by experts from Stanbic Bank.

The launch kicks off the application process where potential applicants will go through a series of selection processes, and shortlisted applicants will move on to the Virtual Training Bootcamp.

Source: Joy News Online

Yetunde Sanni co-founded Tech in Pink, an organisation that teaches young girls how to code.

Technology is a liberating force for African women

Guest post by Charles Onyango-Obbo, highlighting innovative projects tackling entrenched gender inequality among African women entrepreneurs.

As ride-hailing apps proliferate the globe, An Nisa Taxi in Kenya is one of the standouts in Africa.

Developed by 33-year-old Mehnaz Sarwar, An Nisa is run by women and serves female passengers and children exclusively.

Ms. Sarwar sought to overcome two obstacles: limited job opportunities for women in a male-dominated industry and the reluctance of women to hail taxis because physical abuse from drivers—including sexual abuse—is known to take place.

An Nisa Taxi’s priority is to offer safe, reliable, and trustworthy drivers, whether it’s taking you home after a night out, starting your day with a ride to work, or picking up your children after school,” the company states on its website.

In an article for Quartz, an online business publication, journalist Osman Mohamed Osman observes: “Unlike others in the market, which collect 25% of the driver’s earnings, An Nisa charges just 10% of what the drivers earn from trips.” Mr. Osman quotes Ms. Sarwar as saying she wanted to empower women who need “financial freedom.”

New possibilities

An Nisa’s successful launch demonstrates the possibilities new technologies offer African women in male-dominated industries. It also conveys a new ethos regarding how earnings are distributed and show how services can be deployed to address important needs of women—safety in this case.

In Uganda, Brenda Katwesigye, a graduate of Makerere University, founded Wazi Vision, a company that provides eye-testing services and glasses. Ten percent of the money paid for each pair purchased online or through direct sales channels goes to helping a child in need to acquire a pair of glasses.

To make this possible, we go directly to our communities, perform eye-testing exercises and give away eyeglasses to children whose parents cannot afford them,” says Ms. Katwesigye.

The glasses, made from recycled plastic, are designed in Uganda and manufactured in Switzerland. A virtual reality testing kit brings eye testing to communities that do not have optometrists or access to affordable eye-care services.

The company’s operations reflect the sensibilities of female innovators as well as their concern for the environment, children and women. Wazi Vision’s glasses cost 80% less than similar competing products.

Turning to Nigeria, Chika Madubuko identified another vital service, that of caring for the elderly—a stressful and time-consuming task that African women are traditionally expected to perform for their family members.

Madubuko’s Greymate Care is an online platform with over 500 experienced and vetted caregivers and 130 doctors and nurses. Services for the elderly are easily booked on the company’s website, freeing up time for women to concentrate on their work and earn an income. The company uses GPS to monitor the movements of staff in the field.

Ms. Madubuko expects the company to grow beyond her country and to provide thousands of jobs on the continent in the future.

Temie Giwa-Tubosun, also from Nigeria, founded LifeBank Nigeria (initially called One Percent Project), a blood sourcing and delivery service. LifeBank uses mobile and web technology and smart logistics to deliver blood from labs to patients and doctors in hospitals across Nigeria.

Nigeria needs about 1.8 million pints of blood every year, but its Ministry of Health can only collect 500,000 pints of blood. LifeBank’s intervention is timely, reports Nigeria’s The Guardian newspaper.  The company has 40 blood banks and services 300 hospitals. Blood boxes delivered by riders can only be opened by recipients via a preset Bluetooth connection.

We’re like Amazon for blood banks,” Ms. Giwa-Tubosun says. “Once we have their order, we deploy it where it’s needed, using motorbikes and trucks.” Since 2015, LifeBank has delivered 11,000 pints and saved at least 2,500 lives. Ms. Giwa-Tubosun has already expanded into oxygen delivery and hopes to add vaccines and antivenins.

In nearby Ghana, social entrepreneur Josephine Marie Godwyll is on a mission to bring engaging learning experiences to children, especially those in rural communities. Her company, Young at Heart Ghana, uses digital platforms to create such experiences.

The company has engaged over 5,000 children since 2013 through information and communication technology (ICT) outreaches and learning hubs, digital learning clubs, fairs, and e-learning platforms.

Social media

Finally, social media has become a launchpad for successful initiatives led by women. Temraza Haute Couture is an award-winning Egyptian fashion house specializing in handmade evening and bridal dresses. Farida Temraza, CEO and designer in chief, has successfully used Facebook advertising to promote her company’s brand internationally.

Temraza Haute Couture’s video ads have gained thousands of views, enough to drive thousands of clients to her website. Her sales increased by 55% in six months.

Nigerian-American activist Lola Omolola founded Female IN (FIN), a private Facebook group that acts as a support network for women worldwide, shares stories of domestic violence, sexual assault, and other issues. Popular posts often get as many as half a million views.

Ms. Omolola started FIN in 2014 when nearly 300 girls were kidnapped from a boarding school in Chibok, northeastern Nigeria, by the Boko Haram militant group, triggering the global #BringBackOurGirls campaign. The group currently has about 1.7 million members.

Equally notable is what Christine Anyumel is doing with the Facebook group Healing Naturally Together (HNT), which she started to encourage Ugandan women to adopt a healthier, more natural and more sustainable lifestyle. HNT is a vibrant group of herbal medicine enthusiasts who use natural remedies for health conditions, especially reproductive challenges such as infertility, fibroids, and obesity.

The group is nearing 600,000 members from all over the world and provides business opportunities for members to, for example, sell natural juices and organic foods to other members.

Natural remedies have no shortage of critics, and Ms. Anyumel and HNT have endured their fair share of pushback. But she is not throwing in the towel. HNT has now grown into a company that makes homeopathic remedies and organic foods.

In South Africa, home and room rentals app Airbnb has proved a boon for many women hosts, giving an especially welcome financial boost to single mothers, according to recent statistics released by the online booking platform.

The typical woman host in South Africa earned nearly $2,000 (R25,917.10) last year, more income than earned by the typical women hosts in other countries,” Airbnb reported.

The company added that “More than 60% of women hosts in South Africa are Superhosts—hosts who are specially designated by Airbnb as hosting guests frequently, receiving a high number of five-star reviews, and being exceptionally responsive to guests.

In Kenya, Airbnb is providing women with a new way to earn money and build businesses. A report by the platform coinciding with International Women’s Day on March 8, 2018, showed Kenyan women Airbnb entrepreneurs earning about one-third of their annual household expenditure from the platform and using such earnings to start their own businesses.

The top five countries for women Airbnb hosts among the 14 surveyed were Kenya—where women earned 34% of average household expenditure via Airbnb—India at 31%, Morocco at 20%, China at 19% and Japan at 15%.

All these platforms and innovations showcase how technology can break up the male monopoly over access to the market and society. Clearly modern technology has the potential to be a force for equality.

Credit: Africa Renewal

TEF 2019 Cohort

Applications Open for 2019 Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme

The Programme is a 10-year, $100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor and fund 10,000 African entrepreneurs. The Programme’s objective is to generate at least 1,000,000 new jobs and create at least $10 billion in new business revenue across Africa.


2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit Scheduled for Silicon Valley

The 7th annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) will be held in Silicon Valley – San Francisco Bay Area, California from June 22-24, 2016.

The 7th annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) will be held in Silicon Valley – San Francisco Bay Area, California from June 22-24, 2016.

This strategic location highlights the important role that entrepreneurship plays in the U.S. economy, and also provides a unique platform to connect global entrepreneurs with prominent investors and mentors.

GES 2016 will showcase the United States commitment to the promotion of entrepreneurship, shine a spotlight on entrepreneurs from around the globe, expand access to funders and mentors, facilitate private sector engagement with other regions of the world, and support economic growth and development.

The agenda includes a diverse array of panels, plenaries, workshops, conversations, and opportunities for mentoring and networking.

Everywhere I go across America and around the world, I hear from people – especially young people – who are ready to start something of their own, to lift up people’s lives and shape their own destinies,” President Barack Obama said.

“That’s entrepreneurship – that spark of prosperity that creates new jobs and new businesses, new ways to deliver basic services, and new ways of seeing the world.”

All entrepreneur delegates, including the Youth and Women event, will be selected from the same applicant pool. The online application form for Investor delegates will be available via the website –

This will be the 7th installment in the series, which in addition to the U.S. has been hosted by Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Morocco, and Kenya.

SolarKiosk | A Modular Business Unit for Africa

SolarKiosk, a modular business unit for Africa and offgrid areas anywhere in the world, recently opened its first kiosk near Lake Langano, Ethiopia.
Following a period of design and planning, a privately financed company was formed to prepare the product for serial production by building prototypes and running pilots in several countries. The first prototype of the SolarKiosk was built in November 2011 and displayed in various locations, including the 2012 TEDxBerlin conference.
“What we dream of is that these people at night, can not only enjoy cold beer but maybe they can even watch TV,” said creator Lars Krückeberg during a TED talk in Berlin.

Equipped with rooftop photovoltaic panels, the energy hub will provide enough power for solar lighting, mobile phones, car batteries, a computer and even a solar fridge. Furthermore, local residents will be able to purchase solar lanterns, mobile phones, re-charge cards and refreshments that one typically finds in a kiosk. Since the kiosk is most likely to house the only refrigerator in the community, it can also be used to store community emergency supplies and medicines.
As a local business, the SolarKisok will provide training and secure jobs to several people from the community. This will include training that will educate kiosk operators on how solar products work, how to maintain them, and the everyday workings of a sustainable business.
In March of this year, a subsidiary, SolarKiosk Solutions PLC, was incorporated in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to run a pilot program. Construction of the first prototypes in Ethiopia began in April. Today, the kiosk is up and running in a new community…[continue reading]

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Barcamp Takoradi – March 3rd, 2012

Barcamp Takoradi - March 3rd, 2012
BarCamp Takoradi 2012 is happening on March 3rd at the Takoradi Polytechnic Auditorium.The theme is “Empowering the emerging middle class in a budding economy: efficient use of technology in entrepreneurship”.
This is a FREE event for anyone who is interested in using their skills, talent, and resources to benefit Takoradi, Ghana and Africa as a whole. It will be a networking event to bring people together for a day of discussion, demos and dialogue about Takoradi, Ghana and beyond. The event also hope to assemble Western Regional stakeholders to network, build a supportive, enterprising community and partner.
The BarCamp Ghana team has successfully organized 11 BarCamps – in Accra, Kumasi, Takoradi, Cape Coast, Tamale and Ho over the past couple of years.  The events have brought together over a thousand leaders and change makers.
Barcamp Takoradi 2012 builds upon Barcamp Takoradi 2010 which was held at the Takoradi Technical Institute under the theme “Leading & Enterprising in an Oil & Technology Fueled Economy” on November 27, 2010. The event showcased Ghanaian ingenuity through the MIT fabrication lab (fab-lab), sharing of ideas, and had presentations and panels on how to leverage the burgeoning oil industry.
This year’s edition is been organized in conjunction with local groups at the Takoradi Polytechnic. By partnering with these groups, this Barcamp will focus on engaging youth in Takoradi – especially students – on how to create more value for and within their respective localities and ultimately helping shape the development agenda in this election year. Barcamp Takoradi 2012 will also be a medium for building up the community from 2010’s event, taking stock of what’s happened so far and proposing measures for continued engagement in the Western Region.
The Barcamp will feature multiple sessions about technology tools and products, with a special session on using technology for the Ghanaian elections in 201 2. There shall also be a speed mentoring session where participants get some efficient quality time with selected mentors and resource personnel.
Like all Barcamps, there will be user-generated sessions and discussions where attendees get to set the agenda and topics for the day. Local experts will share knowledge on different technologies and successful entrepreneurs and innovators will share their stories to serve as models for participants.
BarCamp Takoradi 2012 is sponsored by the Takoradi Polytechnic,GhanaThink Foundation, Fienipa Group, etc. Our media partners are and Melody 9.11 FM.
Register/RSVP today at the BarCamp Takoradi eventbrite website.

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