African Summer Event Highlights

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Despite the global travel restrictions and limitations on movement coupled with social distancing, many events in Africa still continued virtually this summer.

These included:

Women in Finance Webinar

The Women in Finance Nigeria UK Chapter organised a webinar on leading from the front and staying the course in business. During the event, Professor Enase Okonedo, the Dean of Lagos Business School, Nigeria shared her experiences in the business world. The professor will be highlighting the highs and the lows of her journey to becoming Dean and will provide insight into the place of African women in leadership.

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in Cyber Security

Held on the 13th of August, Machine Learning Africa, in partnership with Darktrace, held a webinar discussing robust Cyber Security Solutions. During the webinar, experts discussed how Artificial intelligence (AI) and Machine learning can be used to detect and analyse cyber-security threats. It looked at how self-learning and self-defending networks can be the best solution to new cyber-security threats that come with the adoption of emerging technologies. The event had Johan Steyn, Senior Manager, IQBusiness South Africa; Sean Raymond, Sales Director, Darktrace amongst others.

EFInA 2020 Fintech Report on Nigeria

Tomiwa Onaleye from TechNext writes, “This event was organised by Enhancing Financial Innovation and Access (EFInA) to breakdown its 2020 Fintech Report. During the webinar, the assessment survey of the Nigerian Fintech landscape and the Impact of COVID-19 on the sector will be discussed. The report details the understanding of the fintech ecosystem, understanding the Nigerian customer segments and their needs in the Global and Nigerian Fintech Landscape. It also highlights how much has been invested in Fintechs globally, determining success factors for Fintechs to thrive and identifying the players in the Nigerian fintech ecosystem.”

RISEUP “Got Grit?” – Egypt

Reported by us already at The Fintech Times, RiseUp from Home is a special edition digital event responding to the coronavirus ecosystem impact. Under the banner of “Got Grit?” It was recently held from the 13th-15th August virtually, which had 2000 attendees, 30 nationalities, 269 startups, 22 workshops, 47 investors, and 105 speakers over the past three days. The event was a channel that bridged the gap between new stakeholders and the entrepreneurship ecosystem, bringing innovation to traditional markets and offering new investment opportunities to startups.

Despite the global travel restrictions and limitations on movement, coupled with social distancing, many events still continued in Africa

Despite the global travel restrictions and limitations on movement, coupled with social distancing, many events still continued in Africa

Despite the global travel restrictions and limitations on movement, coupled with social distancing, many events still continued in Africa IMAGE SOURCE GETTY

Amazon Web Services (AWS) Mentorship Day

Held on the 4th August,  Amazon Web Services (AWS) held a mentorship event for fintech startups. All sessions were of course held virtually, with one startup mentor and six peers. Fintech startups from early stage to late/growth-stage who are seeking fundraising guidance, technical support, business advice, and mentorship from Africa were encouraged to apply. Group mentor sessions provided opportunities for startup leaders to discuss key challenges and fintech best practices with experienced startup experts and their peers. AWS is a subsidiary of Amazon.com.

Seamless Southern Africa 2020 – Payments, Fintech, Banktech, Insuretech

Over two days on 13-14th August, Seamless Southern Africa brought insights from more than 120 banking, payments and commerce leaders across a series of live presentations, live panel discussions and roundtables. According to its website, “There’s never been a better time for Africa’s payments, banking and fintech leaders to come together to share their expertise and navigate the challenges we are all facing. We just can’t do that in person right now. So, in conjunction with our partners, we’re bringing you Seamless Southern Africa on a virtual platform. This is Africa’s first fully digital payments event.” Some of the key speakers included: Tauriq Kreaan, CEO Tyme Bank; Jan Pilbauer, Chief Payments and Innovation Officer BankServAfrica; Jim Marous, Co-Publisher Digital Banking Report USA; May Govender, CIO for Payments Standard Bank; Chip Mushwana, Divisional Executive Emerging Payments Nedbank – amongst others. The event was organised by Terrapinn.

Ecobank’s Fintech Challenge

The 10 finalists fintechs from 7 different countries, who emerged from a competitive pool of over 600 fintechs, participated in an online finale held on August 21, 2020. The 2020 Finalists were:

  • SOUTH AFRICA (three companies): Always In-Touch Real-time, Franc Group and Ukheshe Payment Solutions
  • INDIA (one company): Fluid AI
  • GHANA (two companies): Growth Factor and Nokwary Technologies Limited
  • RWANDA (one company): Leaf Global Corporation
  • IVORY COAST (one company): Moja Ride
  • MOZAMBIQUE (one company): Papersoft S.A
  • TANZANIA (one company): PayChap

Nokwary from Ghana was the overall winner while South African companies Ukheshe and Growth Factor took second and third place, respectively, according to the press release from Ecobank.

MEST Africa Challenge 2020

Now virtual, tech startups from Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, Côte d’Ivoire, Sénégal, Rwanda, Ethiopia, and Tanzania pitch to win the 2020 MEST Africa Challenge, which was held on the 12th August. Finalists from each country went on to compete on a global stage in front of entrepreneurs, investors, corporate partners and ecosystem players for the chance to win $50,000 in investment from the MEST, and the opportunity to join the MEST incubator community. Agri-tech company Kilimo Fresh Foods Limited from Tanzania emerged as the winner for the MEST Africa Challenge 2020. BAG Innovation and Moussa, both from South Africa, came in as 1st and 2nd runner-up respectively, according to the MEST Africa Summit website. Jorn Lyseggen is the Founder & CEO of Meltwater and MEST Africa. He is a Norwegian entrepreneur and philanthropist who founded Meltwater in Oslo, Norway in 2001.

  • Richie Santosdiaz, Contributing Reporter for Middle East and Africa

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