Two African startups picked for SXSW Accelerator Pitch Event


Two African startups have been selected among the 50 finalists to compete at the SXSW Accelerator Pitch Event in Texas in March, standing the chance to win US$4,000 prize money.

Now in its tenth year, the SXSW Accelerator Pitch Event brings together the most leading-edge tech startups from around the world, to pitch before a live audience of industry experts, venture capitalists, and high-profile media.

50 finalists have been selected to showcase at the event to be held on March 10-11, spanning 10 categories: augmented and virtual reality, enterprise and smart data, entertainment and content, health and wearables, hyper-connected communities, payment and fintech, security and privacy, social and culture, sports and performance, and transportation.

One winner will be crowned in each category, taking home a trophy and a US$4,000 cash prize.

Two African startups made the cut.

Kenya’s Pawame  provides a clean, affordable and reliable solar solution to rural communities; with payments collected via mobile money.  The startup uses these mobile money payments to create credit profiles for customers, enabling the distribution of further financial services.

GoTech, operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Rwanda, develops, designs and implements solutions for local communities to better respond to fire problems.

“The dramatic rise in applicants we’ve seen for the tenth anniversary of our Pitch Event is a solid indicator that SXSW Accelerator has truly become a stage for the tech industry’s best and brightest,” said SXSW Accelerator event producer Chris Valentine.

“The entries showcase innovations at the cutting-edge of trends in tech — from augmented and virtual reality simulators to blockchain and fintech disruptors.”


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Inspired and excited by the African tech entrepreneurial scene, Gabriella spends her time travelling around the continent to report on the most innovative tech startups, the most active investors, and the latest trends emerging in the ecosystem.

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