African startups invited to apply for $1.5m MIT Solve initiative

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African tech startups have been invited to apply for this year’s MIT Solve initiative, which is making more than US$1.5 million in prize funding available to innovative solutions.

Solve, an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) which offers startups funding and access to a global network, advances lasting solutions from tech entrepreneurs to address the world’s most pressing problems, with its 2019 Global Challenges being Circular Economy, Community-Driven Innovation, Early Childhood Development, and Healthy Cities.

In all, over US$1.5 million is available to winning solutions, while teams will join MIT Solve’s supportive community of peers, funders, and experts to help advance their work. Applications are open until July 1.

Last year, 10 African tech startups were among the 33 winners from across the world of Solve. The winning startups included Nigerian medical product discovery and delivery service LifeBank, Ugandan wearable body monitoring device Neopenda, Kenyan mobile disease management service Akiba ya Roho, Rwanda’s E-Heza Digital Health Record, Kenyan learning content platform Eneza, Kenyan coding accelerator Moringa School, and Ghana’s Practical Education Network, which helps STEM teachers employ inquiry-based pedagogies in their classrooms.

Nigeria’s ColdHubs, which provides 24/7 solar powered refrigeration in markets and farms, Benin’s Green Keeper Africa, which harvests an invasive weed and transforms it into a fibre that can absorb oil spills, and Kenyan startup Lynk, which provides informal workers with access to markets and payment management, completed the list.

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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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