Today, 12 African startups graduated from Google’s first Launchpad Accelerator Africa class with developers from Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa.
As part of all Launchpad regional accelerators, startups receive equity-free support, access to Google engineers and intensive mentoring from 20+ teams, access to silicon valley experts and top local mentors, PR training and global media opportunities and close partnership with Google for three months.
The cohort included:
Flexpay – an automated and secured layaway e-commerce system.
Pezesha – a scalable Peer to Peer microlending marketplace that provides secure loans to Kenyans, via mobile money, using big data and credit analytics.
Teheca – an app which helps families and individuals find the right health care providers/workers in Uganda.
TangoTv – a Tanzanian media streaming and video on demand service for African local content, films and shows.
Babymigo, a fast growing parenting community for Africa. Babymigo is building a trusted support network for every mom and moms-to-be irrespective of their social status or geographic location.
Kudi , seamless payments through messaging to send money to any bank, buy airtime & pay bills (DSTv, GOTv, Electricity).
Piggybank.ng securely makes saving possible by combining discipline plus flexibility to make you grow your savings & better manage your finances.
Riby, a finance technology company that provides a simple and smart finance management platform. It provides cooperatives, company groups, employees, individuals, associations, and financial development institutions with features to manage their financial activities.
Thrive Agric gives users the opportunity to fund a farm, empower farmers, learn practical agricultural tips and share in the harvest.
OkadaBooks which seeks to bypass the traffic in the Nigerian book publishing industry by making it easy to publish books, making it cheap to buy books but more importantly making it fun to read books on mobile devices! At the end of the day we are driven by the concept that people will read…if books are made cheap and easily accessible and what better way to do that than by using mobile phones!
OMG Digital a Buzzfeed for Africa.
swiftVEE an agri-platform addressing water scarcity, food security and market efficiency for the livestock sector. It brings the agri-sector into industry 4.0. by offering substantial profit margins that facilitate sustainability and social impact.
On launch, Charles Murito, Google Kenya Country Manager said, “We are thrilled to announce this, the first Launchpad Accelerator Africa class and look forward to working with them to drive innovation into the African market. Africa is home to some incredibly smart people who are working to solve the continent’s problems using homegrown solutions and we’re honoured to be able to be part of that.”
Over the next three years the Launchpad Accelerator Africa programme will provide African startups with over $3-million in equity-free support, working space, and access to expert advisers from Google, Silicon Valley, and Africa. Participants receive travel and PR support during each three-month program.
To qualify, startups have to be a technology startup, based in Sub-Saharan Africa, targeting the African market and have already raised seed funding. Google additionally considered the problem the start up is trying to solve, how it creates value for users, and how they addressed a real challenge for their home city, country or Africa broadly.
Google says its committed to the Sub-Saharan Africa developer ecosystem and has, since April 2016, hosted 13 Launchpad Build and Start events across Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa, featuring some 228 speakers and engaging 590 attendees from local startups in each country.