Mobile operator Tigo supported 131 African tech startups to address and solve social challenges in their countries using digital innovation in 2015, an Impact Report released by the organisation reveals.
According to Tigo’s 2015 Impact Report, a total of 131 social entrepreneurs were supported through the Tigo Digital Changemakers Award, as well as Tigo’s Accelerator and Incubator Programmes, provided in partnership with non-profit foundation Reach for Change.
The Tigo Digital Changemakers Award selects the continent’s top social entrepreneurs who use digital technologies to positively impact their communities, and specifically the lives of children.
Successful applicants receive accelerator support, and following the accelerator the best social entrepreneurs are selected to receive a grant from the local Tigo operation, usually in the range of US$20,000. They also win a place on Reach for Change’s incubator programme.
Through the 131 supported supported through the combined initiatives, Tigo says 146,800 children have benefitted across Senegal, Ghana, Chad, Rwanda and Tanzania.
Tigo says startups which participated in its programmes increased the number of children they were able to impact by an average of 56 per cent – on average, tripling their results.
“Through the Tigo Digital Changemakers Award we have been able to connect with and support outstanding local social entrepreneurs, and I am very impressed with the positive impact that their initiatives have had on thousands of lives so far,” said Cynthia Gordon, chief executive officer (CEO) for Africa at Millicom, which operates under the Tigo brand.
“We at Millicom believe technology can be used to change people’s lives for the better. We are committed to offering our digital expertise to support Africa’s brightest entrepreneurs in bringing about this change.”
Partner Reach for Change also released data on the impact of its incubator programme – which Tigo’s Digital Changemakers are awarded a place on.
According to Reach for Change, 59 per cent of programme graduates expanded geographically; 62 per cent gained more revenues; 41 per cent recruited more employees; and 33 per cent strengthened their management and key operational functions.