GSMA Ecosystem Accelerator Innovation Fund Injects Millions in Equity-Free Grants to African Startups

The GSMA Ecosystem Accelerator Innovation Fund has injected millions in equity-free grants to startups from Africa at the ongoing Mobile World Congress 2018 in Barcelona, Spain.

The startups include Ugandan Fintech startup Ensibuuko and online mpayment platform LipaMobile, Tanzanian Micro-Health Insurance product Jammi Africa, Kenyan education mobile platform Kytabu and Optimetriks , Zambian Musanga Logistics, Nigerian e-learning platform PrepClass, Egyptian Carpooling app Raye7 and multinational knowledge-based network, Lynk. and Farmcrowdy, Nigeria’s  agriculture crowdfunding platform.

This follows what the fund did in  April 2017 when the GSMA Innovation Fund announced the nine startups for its  Innovation Fund. Spanning eight countries, all had in common the fact that they developed a unique approach to addressing challenges very specific to their local context, around, for instance, education, transportation or agriculture.

“Soon after this announcement, we opened applications for our second intake. For this round, our founding partner DFID was joined by the Australian Government, who provide not only additional funding available to start-ups, but also a great opportunity to strengthen our position in Asia Pacific,” said Max Cuvellier, Head of Ecosystem Accelerator Programme, GSMA.

This year’s startup portfolio covers more sectors, including health, insurance, and logisitics, and illustrate a wider range of areas in which local SMEs are using mobile innovation to help solve local problems. Collectively they tackle thirteen of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals introduced by the United Nations and embraced by the mobile industry as a whole.

“We are committed to helping these organisations realise their full socio-economic and commercial potential. We hope the information included in this document will inspire you to engage with them, and to refer relevant start-ups to the upcoming round of our Innovation Fund,” Max concluded.

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