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*Correction (13 March 2020): We incorrectly stated that 12 African startups were selected for the Westerwelle Young Founders Programme, when in fact it was 10. As such, we have amended the article and headline.
Ten African entrepreneurs selected for the latest Westerwelle Young Founders Programme were this week in Berlin to attend the Young Founder Conference.
The conference, which forms part of the programme, kicked off on Tuesday and runs until tomorrow.
The 10 African entrepreneurs were part of 25 entrepreneurs (pictured above in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin) selected from out of 1500 applicants to take part in this year’s edition of the programme.
Run by the Westerwelle Foundation for International Understanding, the programme aims to offer outstanding young entrepreneurs from developing and emerging countries six months of business mentoring.
Twelve African entrepreneurs were among 25 entrepreneurs selected to take part in this year’s Westerwelle Young Founders Programme
The programme’s other participants are from Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Colombia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Thailand, India, Lebanon and Jordan.
After the conference participants will return to their respective country and the programme will continue remotely. During this time monthly peer-mentoring calls will be held in smaller groups, along with monthly expert sessions and webinars. Founders will also be able to schedule regular calls with their mentors.
The foundation does not invest in participants’ startups, but if possible will provide them with relevant investment contacts from its network.
Anatoli Kirigwajjo (Uganda): Anatoli Kirigwajjo is the co-founder and CEO of Yunga Technologies based in Kampala. Yunga Technologies was founded in 2018 and has developed a digital rescue network that connects neighbour to neighbour and neighbour to the police in case of an attack or emergency. Yunga won the Innovating Justice challenge Kampala 2018 organised by HiiL Justice Accelerator. The startup also took first place at the Global Innovation through Science and Technology Competition that took place at the 2019 Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Bahrain.
Damilola Emuze (Nigeria) Damilola Emuze is the co-founder and COO of ScholarX based in Lagos. ScholarX was founded in 2016 and aims to create better access to quality education for high potential youths in Africa irrespective of their socio-economic background. Through its education financing solutions, students and youths are linked with global funding opportunities that ensure access to quality education and 21st-century skills that lead to employment. ScholarX was part of Google Launchpad Accelerator Class 3 and won the World Summit Awards 2017 for Education in Nigeria.
Desmond Konney (Ghana) Desmond Konney is the founder and CEO of Complete Farmer based in Accra. Founded in 2017, the startup has developed an end-to-end digital farming platform that makes it easy for local and global industries to source agricultural commodities and easy for individuals anywhere in the world to own a farm using Internet of Things (IoT) and data technologies. Complete Farmer won the KIC Agritech challenge in 2017 and Demo Africa 2018 and is supported by the Meltwater Incubator in Accra.
Emmanuel Emodek (Uganda) Emmanuel Emodek is the founder and managing director of ChapChap Africa based in Kampala. ChapChap Africa was founded in 2016. The fintech develops software that aims to help improve service delivery to under-served communities. ChapChap is a smartphone powered platform that’s helping small businesses stay afloat and thrive by introducing them to the digital age of doing business. Emmanuel Emodek has won the Prince of Wales price Wales Young Sustainable Entrepreneurs 2019 and is an Alibaba E-fellow and graduate of The University of Cambridge’s accelerator programme.
Jacques Sibomana (South Africa) Jacques Sibomana is the founder and managing director of Kuba Technologies based in Cape Town. Sibomana founded Kuba in 2017 as a digital platform designed to support micro enterprises. Kuba makes it easier for large businesses and individuals to work with small business owners and offers a basket of services and support that business owners can use to grow and create more jobs in their communities. Kuba has won several awards in South Africa including the Impumelelo Social Innovation Awards, Smart & Inclusive Tech Challenge, and was a finalist at the Nation Builder Award and SAB Social Innovation and Disability Awards. The startup also won the community tech segment of the 2019 Imagine Awards.
Jide Ayegbusi (Nigeria): Jide Ayegbusi is the founder and CEO of Edusko.com based in Lagos, Nigeria. Edusko was founded in 2016 to help African parents access suitable schools and financing to give their children access to a quality education. Edusko is a one stop, web-based application that allows parents to compare good schools, make informed decisions, access finance to pay for school fees and enrol their children with ease. Edusko was one of five startups selected by the Nigerian Economy Summit Group in 2017. The startup also made it to the top 10 finalists at the Seedstars World event in Lagos, Nigeria in 2019.
Julius Mbungo (Tanzania) Julius Mbungo is the founder and CEO of Toolboksi based in Dar Es Salaam. Toolboksi was founded in 2017 as a platform that partners with local artisans and handymen to increase their access to jobs by connecting them with customers. The startup won the Best Social Impact Startup in 2019 at the Southern Africa Startup Awards and the Samurai Awards by Samurai Incubate. It has a partnership with Daikin Industries.
Kiptoo Magutt (Kenya) Kiptoo Magutt is co-founder and CTO of Twende Carpool based in Nairobi, Kenya. Twende was founded in 2018 and is a carpooling service. It is a peer-to-peer ride-sharing platform that connects people traveling long distances in the same direction. Twende has participated in the Transformative Urban Mobility Initiative (TUMI) Accelerator at C4DLab/University of Nairobi and is supported by the Baobab Network Accelerator and has netted investment from several angel investors.
Luther Lawoyin (Nigeria) Luther Lawoyin is the founder and CEO of Pricepally.com based in Lagos. Pricepally was founded in 2019 and provides access to affordable, nutritious, traceable and secure food items in Africa’s urban cities. Pricepally is a wholesale and sharing economy e-commerce platform that enables people to buy food in bulk or share bulk food items with others online to leverage their collective bargaining power. Pricepally has been awarded a Foodtech500 global company by Forward Fooding and is part of the French-German AyadaLab incubator and accelerator programme organised by Goethe-Institut and The Institut Francais. Pricepally has also been part of the venture scaling bootcamp at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston.
Marita Walther (Namibia) Marita Walther is the co-founder and Managing Director of Ebikes4Africa, based in Windhoek, Namibia. The startup was founded in 2015 as a social enterprise that provides access to e-mobility, solar recharging and customised container hubs to communities across Africa. Ebikes4Africa has won the National Energy Globe Award and SASA Best Social Impact Startup Namibia, was selected for BFS Start-Up Studio, represented Namibia through the Global Entrepreneurship Network, GEN Accelerates Program and Entrepreneurship World Cup, Climate Innovations Exchange, and UNWTO Tourism Startup Competition.
Featured image: Participants of the 2020 Westerwelle Young Founders Programme pictured in Berlin this week (Supplied)