Payday, a Pan-African Fintech startup founded by Favour Ori, has become the first Rwandan company in history to join the prestigious Techstars Toronto Accelerator program.
Payday is a platform that was created to provide fast payments for Africans across the globe. Just last week, the company announced that it had secured $1m in pre-seed funding to scale its operations.
Techstars is an operational investment company that assists founders and early-stage entrepreneurs scale their vision into a thriving business. The 3-month accelerator program’s goal is to provide entrepreneurs with invaluable skills, resources, and connections to a large pool of global talent and investors.
At the end of the program, the selected startups will be able to pitch to a carefully curated group of investors on the Demo Day.
Speaking on the selection, the CEO of PayDay, Favour Ori said it was a great opportunity for the startup to learn and create a pan-African platform for all to enjoy financial inclusion.
“Joining Techstars will be a game changer for us. This is an opportunity to work with and learn from outstanding mentors, as well as to leverage their experience, skills, and network to create a platform where all Africans, regardless of location, can enjoy financial inclusion”Favour Ori, CEO PyDay
Techstars Toronto Accelerator Program
The inclusion of Payday in this program represents an endorsement from one of the world’s most reputable early-stage investor communities. It also emphasises the potential of the company’s business model and its commitment to developing innovative payment solutions that will simplify how Africans move money around the world.
Before selecting a company for the program, Techstars first looks at the founders and the team. Then, it checks if the team can provide more value and disrupt the industry they are playing in.
The word that best describes the founders and team behind Payday is “resilient”. Favour Ori was found guilty of extortion and high-handedness as CEO of WeJapa and had to resign. But despite all that, he is now the head of another profitable company.
Sunil Sharma, Managing Director of Techstars Toronto said Payday’s recent growth was an affirmation of their belief in the startup.
“Payday has engineered a financial product that Africans need across the continent, and the recent traction they are seeing makes us believe that this is the start of something massive. We are thrilled to be able to co-invest with some of the best early-stage fintech and e-commerce investors in Africa”Sunil Sharma, Managing Director of Techstars Toronto
Other African startups selected into Techstars Toronto’s October 2021 class include Lenco, OurPass, Healthtracka, Rent Small Small, Kyshi, Duhga and Fleri.
Win for Rwanda
PayDay is headquartered in Rwanda so this is also a big win for the country. Rwanda represents one of the best turnaround stories the world has seen in a generation.
During the coronavirus pandemic, the East African country made the news when it incorporated using robots to limit the spread of the coronavirus. Rwanda is also known to be a pacesetter on the continent in embedding technology in its medical field. The country has for long been using drones to deliver blood to hospitals in the land of a thousand hills.
Rwanda is now a well-known tech hub in Africa, creating the kind of tech eco-system that attracts the interest of investors and start-up entrepreneurs alike. One of such is Andela which has partnered with the Rwandan government in order to open a technology hub in the country.
Techstars has 15 unicorns under its umbrella. Some of the notable ones include; SalesLoft, SendGrid, ZipLine, Chainalysis and DataRobot. Payday is positive that they are going to be the next.
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