Irofit, Sokowatch, VugaPay are Innotribe challenge winners

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Nigeria’s Irofit, Kenya’s Sokowatch and Rwanda’s VugaPay have been named winners lf the Innotribe Startup Challenge, taking home EUR10,000 (US$11,000) in prize money each and the chance to showcase their solution in Canada.

Disrupt Africa reported earlier this month 10 African fintech companies had been picked to compete in the challenge, with this list whittled down to three winners at SWIFT’s African Regional Conference yesterday.

The three winners are Nigerian startup Irofit, which provides a mobile Point of Sale that helps small retailers process card payments in real-time, Kenyan startup Sokowatch, a last-mile distribution channel for consumer goods, and Rwanda’s VugaPay, which helps mobile money merchants get paid across Africa.

Each winner takes home EUR10,000 in prize money, but all three will also be offered the opportunity to attend Sibos, SWIFT’s annual global financial services conference, which takes place in Toronto in October.

At the event, the startups will share the stage with fintech experts, banks and financial institutions from across the globe, and will provide insights on innovation happening in Africa.

“Our partnership with SWIFT’s African Regional Conference over the last three years has highlighted how much SWIFT’s community is keen to understand FinTech innovation, whether we refer to its latest developments, benefits or the opportunities it can unlock,” said Fabian Vandenreydt, global head of securities markets, Innotribe and the SWIFT Institute at SWIFT.

“It was a real pleasure for us to provide expert mentoring and in-depth industry feedback to the nine participating startups and we wish them all a lot of success in the future.”

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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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