4 Nigerian Startups Make the Finals for the Africa Netpreneur Prize; They’ll Get a Chance to Pitch to Jack Ma
Four Nigerian entrepreneurs have been named finalists for the Africa Netpreneur Prize Initiative (ANPI) . The Prize promotes and funds African entrepreneurs developing tech-driven solutions to critical issues in Africa.
The Nigerian finalists are Ayodeji Arikawe (co-founder, Thrive Agric), Temie Giwa-Tubosun (founder and CEO, LifeBank), Dr. Tosan J. Mogbeyiteren, (founder, Black Swan) and Chibuzo Opara, (co-founder, DrugStoc). They will contest with 6 other entrepreneurs from across Africa at a finale spearheaded by the Jack Ma Foundation in Accra, Ghana, on November 16, 2019.
The finalists who were chosen from nearly 10,000 applicants across 50 African countries will pitch their business directly to Jack Ma, Founder of Alibaba Group and other reputed judges at the event.
The winners will receive a prize of $1 million, as well as grants from the Jack Ma Foundation and access to the Foundation’s community of supporters and business leaders.
According to Ma, the potential of Africa’s business heroes is limitless. He added that the Africa Netpreneur Prize Initiative was created to inspire a whole new generation of potential game-changers for Africa.
“We launched the Africa Netpreneur Prize Initiative to identify top entrepreneurs from across the continent, not only to reward them but to inspire a whole new generation of potential game-changers for Africa. I truly believe the potential of Africa’s business heroes is limitless,”Jack Ma, Founder of Alibaba Group and the Jack Ma Foundation.
Meet the 4 Nigerian Finalist
Temie Giwa-Tubosun, the founder and CEO of LifeBank has over 10 years’ experience in health-management. In 2014, BBC listed her as one of the 100 women changing the world. She was also recognized by Quartz and the World Economic Forum.
LifeBank is a medical distribution company that uses data and technology to help health workers discover critical medical products. The company has saved over 5,300 lives in Nigeria
Chibuzo Opara, the co-founder of DrugStoc is a health economist and medical doctor with over 12 years of experience in the health sector. He has worked with the World Health Organization, the World Bank, and the International Finance Corporation.
DrugStoc is a cloud-based pharmaceutical IT and logistics platform focused on eliminating counterfeit drugs, expanding access to pharmaceutical products and improving transparency in pricing for healthcare providers and the product supply chain.
Ayodeji Arikawe, the co-founder of Thrive Agric is an accomplished software engineer and serves as both co-founder and CTO for Thrive Agric. Currently, Thrive Agric works with 22,000 farmers in Nigeria, but the company’s aiming to build the largest network of farmers in Africa.
Thrive Agric is an agricultural technology-enabled company that works with smallholder farmers to enable them with greater access to finance, as well as improve their income and harvest distribution.
Dr. Tosan J. Mogbeyiteren, the founder of Black Swan is a public-health specialist with more than 13 years of experience in deploying technology to solve development challenges in Nigeria. Black Swan is currently working with USAID Nigeria to expand WeMUNIZE coverage in northern Nigeria.
The startup is using its WeMUNIZE initiative to help solve Nigeria’s public-health challenges. It deploys automated scheduling, GPS-enabled software-as-a-service that uses a combination of digital record keeping and community engagement to increase birth registration and early childhood immunizations.
The other Finalist are Waleed Abd El Rahman, CEO, Mumm (Egypt); Mahmud Johnson, founder and CEO, J-Palm (Liberia); Kevine Kagirimpundu, co-founder and CEO, UZURI K&Y (Rwanda); Christelle Kwizera, founder, Water Access Rwanda (Rwanda); Dr. Omar Sakr, founder and CEO, Nawah-Scientific (Egypt); Moulaye Taboure, co-founder and CEO, Afrikrea (Cote D’Ivoire).
The other judges for the Africa Netpreneur Prize are Strive Masiyiwa, Founder and Executive Chairman of Econet Group; Ibukun Awosika, Chairman of First Bank of Nigeria and Founder/CEO of The Chair Centre Group; and Joe Tsai, Executive Vice Chairman of Alibaba Group.
The Netpreneur Prize which is also supported by UNCTAD plans to award $10 million to 100 African entrepreneurs within the next ten years.
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