Woman-led edtech Ambani wins I’M IN 2021 accelerator

ambani africa app ceo Mukundi Lambani awards

Mukundi Lambani, founder of Ambani Africa, an interactive African-language based early childhood edtech, has been announced as the winner of the third cohort of the I’M IN accelerator, supported by IDF Capital.

The winner received a R250 000 cash prize

The winner and runners-up were announced at the virtual Demo Day held on 30 July 2021, where Ambani received a R250 000 cash prize. 

The Demo Day judging panel included VC heavyweights such as Llew Classen of Newtown Partners, Keet van Zyl of Knife Capital and Karabo Morule.

Commenting on the programme in a statement, Polo Leteka, Chairman and founder of IDF Capital said “I’m proud of these startup founders who have built globally competitive and locally relevant solutions during the most challenging times the world is in now. We are confident that their growth will encourage others to follow suit.”

Lambani is no stranger to wins, having been chosen as part of the M&G 200 Young South Africans in 2020 and winning the TIA Swiss-SA edition this year. 

Ambani makes digital learning fun and easy

Ventureburn spoke to Lambani about the prize and what it means for the startup. “Winning the award validates our work and goes a long way to helping us continue to build and solve this problem as an empowered team,” she said.

“There is a lack of easily accessible digital resources for African language learning, especially for young learners who come from African households and are taught in English at school,” explained Lambani. 

“Ambani Africa facilitates early learning by providing tech-enabled materials that help African learners in the primary school phase learn African languages. Ambani is learner-centred and uses games to facilitate practice while helping parents and teachers to enable children to learn,” she clarified.

The I’M IN accelerator takes place over 10 months. Nine startups from across several disciplines, including agritechs, data management, e-commerce, edtech and IoT were given R1.5 million each in seed capital to take their concept to pitch at the Demo Day pitch competition. 

Participants are given in-depth training through business skills masterclasses and workshops and receive commercialisation support, and advice and mentorship concerning tech development and startup growth.

Lambani has big plans for the cash prize. “We will use the funding to further develop our web gaming platform for schools offering African languages and our free language app. In addition, the funding will allow us to strengthen our internal capabilities to secure future funding and achieve milestones that will internationalise the business,” she closed off.

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Featured image: Ambani Founder Mukundi Lambani (Supplied)

Lauren Daniels, Editor


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