More than 20 of Africa’s finest start-ups will today and tomorrow vie for the attention of international investors attending the AfricArena West Africa Summit in Dakar, the capital city of Senegal. The two-day event vows to build a stronger tech startup investment ecosystem for Africa.
Start-ups, who are between the seed and growth stages, will pitch at the summit where Partech general partner Tidjane Deme, representing one of the continent’s leading investors, is set to deliver the keynote address. He will explore the state of tech in Africa.
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In January, Ventureburn reported that the Paris-based Partech’s current portfolio includes over 200 companies in more than 30 countries, 14 of which are valued at more than $1 billion. The venture capitalist firm supports entrepreneurs in Africa, Europe, North America and Asia.
Meanwhile, many top speakers have been confirmed for the AfricArena West Africa Summit. On the line-up are, among others, Oumar Basse, chief executive and co-founder of Yobante Express, Sassoum Niang, the chief marketing officer of Touch, and Marieke Roestenberg, ventures programme manager at FMO.
Besides the pitching sessions, attendees can also look forward to engaging panel discussions. The difficult journey of scaling unicorns will be unpacked in a discussion about the race to valuation vs. sustainable foundation. Also, the many barriers to acceleration in Francophone countries as well as the future of venture capital in West Africa as opposed to the rest of the continent will be discussed.
Top pitches anticipated
A series of exciting West African start-ups were selected to pitch at the AfricArena summit. In the seed track category, the Nigerian-based AgroData is on the list. This is a community-based beekeeping initiative providing farmers with free-beehives. Among the series A participants are Survey54, a cloud-based survey platform focusing on emerging markets. The growth stage list includes Bizao, which accelerates digital payment adoption in Francophone Africa.
On its website, organisers of the AfricArena summit says their platform “fosters bright and forward-thinking minds to network, get inspired and co-build a stronger tech startup investment ecosystem for Africa. “
The summit, held at the Terrou-Bi resort, will also feature a #FastTrackTech project from the International Trade Centre of the United Nations.