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Live Blog: Top 40 startups launch at DEMO Africa 2014

By Miguel Heilbron on September 25, 2014

DEMO Africa is the premier platform for the best and brightest companies throughout Africa seeking to launch their products in front of a global audience. On Thursday and Friday, September 25 and 26, 40 entrepreneurs are launching their innovations at DEMO Africa 2014, in Lagos, Nigeria. VC4Africa has a front row seat and live-blogs the event in real-time, follow the updates as they happen below! Investors with a VC4Africa Pro Account have access to background documents and full details of the startups who launch.

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It’s a wrap, see you at DEMO Africa 2015!!

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Closing remarks: Bunmi Okunowo, Special Assistant on Information Technology to the Honorable Minister, Federal Ministry of Communication Technology

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Chura (Kenya)!


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Live Blog: VC4Africa Investor Summit at DEMO Africa – the Future of Angel Investing in Africa

By Miguel Heilbron on September 24, 2014

On Wednesday September 24, 2:00 PM – 5:30 PM West African time (GMT+1), VC4Africa presents the Investor Summit “The Future of Angel Investing in Africa” at DEMO Africa 2014 in Lagos, Nigeria. We’ll be live-blogging the event in real-time, follow the updates as they happen below!

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Join us tomorrow for a new live blog: live from DEMO Africa!!

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David van Dijk (VC4Africa) & Harry Hare (DEMO Africa) thank all participants and invite all the investors to join the next days at DEMO Africa where Africa’s top innovators will present their pitches!

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Closing remarks from Dehab Ghebreab Foreign Service Officer at the U.S. Department of State / LIONS Partnership.

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Ben White (VC4Africa) closes […]

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Global Entrepreneurship Week to expand investment in Africa

By Jonathan Ortmans on September 22, 2014

Read how the U.S. Department of State, one of the supporters of both DEMO Africa this week and the Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) in November, is expanding its work to support new firm formation in Africa. Read more about VC4Africa’s GEW meetups in November too.

At the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Liverpool in 2012, GEW’s principal leaders from across the African continent sat down our global staff to call for a change in our approach to promoting entrepreneurship in Africa. Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) had grown to 140 countries very deliberately using a global “one size fits all” strategy that had worked in building a global ecosystem for mutual support… except in Africa.

We heard the message and got to work. Within a few months, we […]

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VC4Africa hosts Investor Summit at DEMO Africa in Lagos – Check out the program & speakers

By Miguel Heilbron on September 17, 2014

On Wednesday September 24, VC4Africa presents the Investor Summit the “Future of Angel Investing in Africa” at DEMO Africa 2014 in Lagos, Nigeria, together with various partners. This is the first time angel investors come together from across the continent to connect as a Pan-African network.

Speakers and panelists include Jason Njoku (iROKO, Spark), Tomi Davies (Lagos Angels Network), Baybars Altuntas (European Business Angel Network), Leonard Stiegeler (Ringier), Dipo Adebo (Angel investor), Dehab Ghebreab (US State Department), Collins Onuegbu (Lagos Angels Network), Sylvia Brune (88MPH), Viktor Okigbo (IDEA Nigeria), Dr. Inderpal Mumick (Kirusa), Tope Ajao (Leadpath), Ben White (VC4Africa) and others.

Over thirty investors have confirmed their attendance. These investors, both local and international, include angel investors, impact investors, venture capital funds, and corporate […]

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EXCLUSIVE: Africa’s payment venture SimplePay secures SeedStars World’s Best Startup prize!

By Miguel Heilbron on September 15, 2014

While initially an Asian startup was announced as the winner of the Seedstars 2014 “Best startup in the world” competition, in the end an African startup secured the prize! Congrats to VC4Africa member Simeon Ononobi, CEO of SimplePay! He shares his story below. 

Congratulations on the funding you secured! What did you win?

“SeedStars World’s first prize is up to 500,000 USD in seed investments from European investors, managed by SeedStars. Because we didn’t need up to that for seed funding we negotiated for just 300,000 Swizz Francs, around 330,000 USD.”

What happened exactly?

“After a grueling deliberation by the jury members at the SeedStars World finale, actually Flitto from South Korea was announced the winner – and we got second place. But then it became clear […]

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Top business minds confirm attendance to DEMO Africa & Investor Summit in Lagos

By Harry Hare on September 12, 2014

A sneak preview into the list of expected guests for DEMO Africa and associated African angel investor summit has revealed the names of some of the most influential business and technology personalities.

The list features Mr Tony Elumelu, the Chairman of Heirs Holdings and founder of Tony Elumelu Foundation; Mr Jason Njoku, Founder of iROKO; Mr Fernando de Sousa, General manager of the Microsoft for Africa Initiativel; Mr Baybars Altuntas, Vice president of the European Business Angels Network (EBAN);   Mr John Momoh, CEO of Channels TV Nigeria; Ms Cristina Riesen, General Manager Europe of Evernote; and many more.

The DEMO Africa forum which will also be addressed by the Minister for Communication Technolgy, Mrs Dr Omobola Johnson and her counterpart       Mr […]

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The 2015 Green Pioneer Accelerator Program launches in Kenya and South Africa

By Ben White on September 11, 2014

A new acceleration program was announced for green entrepreneurs today at the Seed Africa Symposium 2014 in Nairobi, Kenya. This ambitious, continental acceleration program targets green entrepreneurs looking to take their innovations to scale in Africa.

Are you an entrepreneur working on a highly scalable product or services that mitigates the effects of climate change? Does your business introduce renewable energy sources to market or reduce energy consumption? Maybe you are working on a different innovation that makes our society and planet both greener and healthier? If this is case, consider joining the 2015 Green Pioneer Acceleration Program and participate in either the Kenya (apply here) or South Africa (apply here) cohort. For more details about eligibility see the Green Pioneer Accelerator Brochure.

The […]

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New global series of VC4Africa GEW meetups this November – Join in your city!

By Miguel Heilbron on September 9, 2014

VC4Africa believes entrepreneurship development in Africa can be accelerated when we connect a global network of knowledge and capital. On November 20th the VC4Africa community will host a global dialogue on African entrepreneurship and investment as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) 2014, building on the initiative we started last year. Signup to host one too with the form in this article!

On Thursday, November 20th, VC4Africa members from around the globe are taking the initiative to host a meetup in their own town. These informal networking events bring together entrepreneurs, angels and VC investors eager to contribute to the continent’s next great success story.

Last year the VC4Africa meetups we organised in Global Entrepreneurship Week 2013 attracted 2000 people at meetups in 26 cities in 20 […]

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DEMO Africa alumni company Fairwaves joins prestigious Techstars accelerator, shoots up ‘mobile network in a box’

By Miguel Heilbron on September 8, 2014

Today’s featured member of the VC4Africa community is entrepreneur Alexander Chemeris, CEO and Founder of the company Fairwaves, one of the great 40 startups launched at DEMO Africa last year.

Fairwaves’ innovation is making mobile communications affordable in rural and remote areas with a ‘network in a box’. They just raised new investments and got accepted at the prestigious Techstars accelerator in Boston, US!

Congratulations on the new milestones! What have you raised so far, and what are you still looking for?

“So far, we raised USD 240,000 from nine business angels in the previous round. We are currently raising another USD 400,000 as a bridge round. This includes taking USD100,000 from Techstars’ Star Power Fund and raising another USD 300,000 from angels on the […]

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MEST & Hub Accra: two interesting tech hub models from Ghana

By Dan Evans on September 3, 2014

Dan Evans of the Network Science Center at West Point (US) discusses insights from his trips to collect data on entrepreneurial ecosystems in various cities in Africa. Below he discusses two of Ghana’s key tech hubs. Also see his previous discussions on Kampala and Nairobi’s startup ecosystems.

MEST

Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) is drastically different than any other incubator I’ve visited. MEST was founded in Accra by Jorn Lyseggen in 2008. Lyseggen, a Norwegian, established an internet consultancy company in 1995, which has grown into the Meltwater Group, a software as a service (SaaS) company, providing cloud-based computing solutions to more than 16,000 global clients.

The Meltwater School House in the East Legon area of Accra

MEST has a rigorous application process and accepted students […]

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