#AfricaTech50 looks to showcase Africa tech startups

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Nominations are open for the AfricaTech50 programme, which looks to identify and rank the region’s fastest growing startups in the technology space and those most likely to impact African growth over the next five years.

Nominations can now be made by tweeting the name of your suggested startup to using the hashtag #Africatech50, with the final list and ecosystem report to be published during the upcoming Africa Technology Week, taking place on September 21-25.

Organiser Sean Obedih, founding partner of the NewGenAngels investment club, said Africa has produced a stream of quality technology companies over the last 10 years, and the goal of #AfricaTech50 is to showcase some of these companies to the rest world.

“Africa’s challenging environment often leads to people coming up with exciting solutions. Technology affects all areas of our lives, from healthcare, financial services, education, agriculture, mining, architecture, sports, media, and entertainment. The accompanying report will look at how Africa is changing technology and how technology is changing Africa,” he said.

“Our goal is to showcase the ingenuity of African entrepreneurs to the world and AfricaTech50 is a crucial pillar of that initiatives,” he told Disrupt Africa.

Obedih said to produce the list his team would be working with leading incubators, accelerators, investors and other key stakeholders, with nominations being sought from across the continent.

To be eligible, entrepreneurs must be African nationals or have made Africa their home in running a tech business. They must also be the chief executive or part of the founding team of a technology company, remaining actively involved in the organisation or in related entrepreneurial endeavours.

Judges will pick the top 50 based on factors such as the current impact of an entrepreneur, the innovation level of their work, and whether they have global standing or potential to grow into a global brand.

“We also want to shine a spotlight on young tech entrepreneurs, people at the start of their careers but beginning to make a major impact. Accordingly, our judges will also vote on candidates aged 30 or under to create a top 10 ranking. However, some of these young founders have already achieved so much that they may also deserve entry on to the main Top 50 list,” Obedih said.

“The goal is to create a perfect blend of high growth startups and fast growing scaleups and a definitive guide to investors and policy makers for one of the world’s most fascinating ecosystem.”

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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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