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A total of €80 000 in prize money is up for grabs to African innovators who have developed solutions that can help transform the continent, in the 10th edition of the Orange Social Venture Prize.
The prize, run by French telecommunications company Orange, on Monday (9 March) opened a call for entries.
Orange is looking for technological projects that have the potential to make a positive impact on improving life for those in Africa and the Middle East — in areas such as education, health care, agriculture, mobile payments or sustainable development.
Applicants have until 5 June to upload their projects to the prize’s website in the OSVP section.
The Orange Social Venture Prize which will run in first a country and then international phase, is now accepting entries
The competition will kick off with an initial phase during which the 17 Orange subsidiaries from the Africa and Middle East region, will each examine projects submitted in their respective country and nominate up to three winners.
There will then be a second international phase in which the winners from each country, up to 54 winners in total, will compete before an international panel which will award the grand prize at AfricaCom, one of the largest tech fairs in Africa, which will take place in November in Cape Town.
The 10 international finalists will have the opportunity to receive personalised support from experts in founding and financing new companies.
The prize is aimed at students, employees or entrepreneurs aged over 21 years and startups that are less than three years old, in the following countries.
Prize aimed at 17 countries
To qualify, applicants must hail from the following countries: Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Egypt, Guinea Bissau, Guinea, Jordan, Liberia, Madagascar, Mali, Morocco, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Tunisia.
Like the prize’s three 2019 winners: Chaque Souffle Compte (Cameroon), J-Palm Liberia (Liberia) and Flit Ride (Madagascar), three international winners will receive, in addition to the national prizes, respectively €25 000, €15 000 and €10 000 for first, second and third prizes.
For the first time this year a women’s prize worth €20 000 has been added to the three international prizes, to encourage female entrepreneurship on the continent. This prize will reward either a woman, or a project offering a technological solution to improve the living conditions of women.
Furthermore, a special prize worth €10,000 will also be given by the international panel. The special prize will reward a project that improves the daily life of vulnerable people such as the disabled or marginalised people or those who are socially and financially disadvantaged.
In 2019, the prize received 1333 entries and among these 10 won personalised support from Orange and its partner, the start-up incubator Bond’Innov.