World Bank’s XL Africa picks 20 startups for its new Francophone Africa accelerator


Twenty of the most promising Francophone African tech start-ups will participate in the L’Afrique Excelle residency in Mali, a full-week bootcamp set to kick off the Francophone edition of the World Bank Group’s XL Africa, tech start-up accelerator from March 24 to 30.

L’Afrique Excelle, the francophone adaptation of the popular XL Africa program will connect entrepreneurs in Anglophone and Francophone Africa and give opportunity for startups in Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Togo and Mali to shine too.

The Residency will conclude with a venture showcase at the Francophone Africa Investor Summit. A select 10 companies will advance to the France Residency in May 2019, where they will receive intensive training and mentoring at thecamp with Sophia Business Angels, coaching by experts at Deloitte’s and Google’s offices, and get exposure to investors at the upcoming AfroBytes and VivaTech conferences to be held in Paris on May 15-18, 2019.

With participation from Africa’s leading investment groups, L’Afrique Excelle will help these start-ups attract early stage capital between US$250,000 and US$5 million.

“Similar to the XL Africa program, L’Afrique Excelle has attracted a number of growth-oriented digital start-ups from Francophone Africa. Many of them have already raised seed funding, totaling over $11 million, and are active in several African markets. This is a strong signal regarding the competitiveness of Francophone African start-ups and their contribution to Africa’s digital economies,” said Sebastian Molineus, Director of the Finance, Competitiveness & Innovation Global Practice at the World Bank Group.

The selection process for L’Afrique Excelle was completed by a panel of industry experts from prominent Africa-focused funds including ProparcoOrange Digital Ventures, GSMA,Brightmore CapitalBlackPearlPartech, AHL Venture PartnersGreenTec Capital, Outlierz VenturesAccion , First Growth Fund, Compass VC and Oikocredit.

L’Afrique Excelle is an opportunity to highlight the work of companies from the francophone world and give them a well-deserved and much needed exposure,” lauded Sofien V. Sidhoum, Partner at GreenTec Capital.

“Supporting a new generation of African entrepreneurs in building innovative business models to solve the continent’s challenges is at the core of our mission” said Babacar Seck, investment officer at Proparco. “Our participation in L’Afrique Excelle enables us to meet with exceptional entrepreneurs who dedicate their efforts to solving significant challenges on the continent.”

The selected start-ups participating in the event are:

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StarNews Mobile (Media / Cameroon, Congo, Ivory Coast)Lifi Led (Cleantech / Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, CAR, Liberia, Madagascar)
GiftedMom (Healthtech / Cameroon, Ivory Coast)AmA (Fintech / Senegal)
Paps (Logistics/ Senegal, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast)LONO (Cleantech / Ivory Coast)
Tripafrique (Transport / Ivory Coast)Sudpay ( (Fintech / Senegal, Ivory Coast, Benin, Togo, Guinea)
Firefly Media (Adtech, Transport / Senegal)Exportunity GBC2 (Fintech, Import/Export / Mauritius, Benin, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Togo)
Solaris Offgrid (Fintech, SaaS, Solar / Benin, Burkina Faso, Senegal, Cameroon, Rwanda)SmartOne Big Data / Madagascar, Mauritius)
Optimetriks (Retail Technology / Mali, Senegal, Niger, Ghana, Kenya)CityTaps (Water & Sanitation / Niger, Senegal)
MaTontine (Fintech / Senegal, Ivory Coast)Diool (Fintech / Cameroon)
LAfricaMobile (Connectivity, SaaS, API / Senegal, Niger, Mali, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Burkina Faso)OniriQ (Cleantech, Offgrid Energy / Senegal)
Ouicarry (Logistics/ Senegal, Benin, Mali, Togo)Eyone (Healthtech / Senegal, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger)