Tanzania innovation fund grants startups $39k

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The Innovation Fund run by Tanzanian ICT sector development organisations TANZICT and COSTECH has awarded 11 local startups a total of TZS85 million (US$39,000) in funding.

Disrupt Africa reported in March on the launch of the latest round of the fund, which originally rolled out in 2012, with Tanzanian startups to apply for up to TZS20 million (US$9,200) in funding.

TANZICT said the fund was looking for startups with commercially viable, innovative ideas addressing specific social and economic needs in Tanzania, with applicants required to work with a reputable Tanzanian organization supporting innovators and entrepreneurs, such as Dar Teknohama Business Incubator, SIDO incubators, Twende, KINU, and Buni.

A total of 11 grants have now been made, with the first six selected in April from a total of 132 applications.

Crop handling solution Multi Crop Thresher was awarded TZS5 million (US$2,300), avocado oil product AVOMERU TZS14 million (US$6,400), child health solution Totohealth Tanzania TZS12,8 million (US$5,850), reading app Hadithi App TZS8 million (US$3,700), bio-feed company TABICO TZS14 million (US$6,400), and agri-tech startup JamiiFarm YZS10 million (US$4,600).

The May round was a special edition purely for innovators from Zanzibar, with five startup awarded money from 106 applications.

Solar phone-charging bag manufacturer My Precious Bag earned TZS4.6 million (US$2,100), a three-wheel scooter for disabled persons TZS3.5 million (US$1,600), a milk processing startup TZS4.5 million (US$2,000), service provider app WajasiriApp TZS2.99 million (US$1,370) and an energy saving cooler fan TZS3.55 million (US$1,620).

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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