88mph partners with Samsung, extends reach of African startups

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Startup accelerator 88mph and Samsung Electronics Africa have entered into a partnership to provide three lucky startups, who enter the 88mph programme before 1 August, the chance for placement on the Built for Africa App store, potentially giving a presence on millions of smart devices across Africa, as well as marketing help from Samsung to boot.

“88mph is extremely excited about partnering with a company like Samsung, and being a filter for sourcing great products to their platform,” says Kresten Buch, Founder & MD of 88mph. “As an early-stage investor, it’s important to create an infrastructure around the startups that can increase their chances of making it big. Teaming up with great companies is part of our goal to add substantial value to startups beyond investment.”

The partnership will not only give the startups a premium spot on the Built for Africa store, but it also has potential co-branding pushes, such as Samsung’s deals with Universal Music, DStv, Pana TV and eKitabu – aimed at growing and driving locally relevant content and services for Africa.

“We are focused on delivering high quality, environment-specific mobile products to our consumers across Africa, backed by locally developed and relevant content,” says Thabiet Allie, Head of Content and Services for Samsung Electronics Africa. “We are thrilled that we can tap into 88mph’s pool of talented entrepreneurs, and give them access to our large user base, while satisfying our consumer needs here in Africa, promote sustainable business, and help drive growth on the continent.”

The partnership is set to combine the knowledge and skills of young entrepreneurs within a programme such as 88mph, with the vast distribution network Samsung has across Africa. It is a great fit for startups that have produced a product or service geared towards the African consumer, and want to extend their reach across the continent.

“With this partnership, we will be able to attract startups with more mature products or international startups looking to target emerging markets. It’s an extremely rare opportunity to be able to reach millions of your target users in such a short period of time. The fact that it is Samsung who will also market your product alongside theirs, adds credibility, and is basically just wicked cool,” says Sylvia Brune, Head of Partnerships at 88mph.

Sectors that Samsung focuses on – education, entertainment, health — will get special attention, as well as startups whose product or service take Africa’s physical and infrastructural demands into account.

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