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JFD: 4 future champions of African Tech awarded Margaret 2022

The Margaret Awards, distinctions awarded each year on the occasion of Digital Women’s Day (DWD) to women who are working to revolutionize the world through disruptive tech projects, were unveiled on March 8. Here is a close-up on the most promising “digital fairies” in Europe and Africa.  

By the editorial staff

 Launched in 2013 by Digital Women’s Day (DWD), a growth gas pedal that works to reduce gender inequality in the tech world and to help women-led startups and corporate initiatives break through the glass ceiling, the Margaret Awards recognize women entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs who focus on disruptive innovations and shine in a field often considered too masculine in Europe and Africa.  The name Margaret was given to this award in homage to Margaret Hamilton, a NASA computer coder who led the development of the embedded software of the Apollo space program, thanks to which Man was able to walk on the Moon for the first time in the 1960s. 

6 “ambitious and audacious” projects

 The 2022 awards were unveiled on March 8 at a special ceremony that coincided with the celebration of International Women’s Day and the 10th anniversary of the JFD. 

After reviewing the 300 applications received during the call for applications, the jury selected six women with ambitious and audacious projects in six categories (Entrepreneur Europe, Entrepreneur Africa, Intrapreneur Europe, Intrapreneur Africa, Junior Europe, and Junior Africa). A jury’s favorite prize was also awarded.  

Here are the winners: 

Margaret Entrepreneur Europe :Europe: Eléna Poincet (France), founder & CEO of Tehtris. She was awarded for a cyber defense solution that helps fight against cyber espionage and cyber sabotage.

Margaret Entrepreneur Africa: Ariane Akeret Soufiano (Gabon), co-founder & CEO CA Pay. She was awarded for a solution for mass payment of salaries, pensions, scholarships, bonuses, mission expenses, via mobile money.

Margaret Intrapreneur Europe: Sue Black (United Kingdom). This professor of computer science at Durham University was awarded for her work to increase recognition and support for women in computing through the TechUpWomen project, which trains women from disadvantaged backgrounds in digital technology.

Margaret Intrapreneur Africa: Cléo Ngokoudi (Ivory Coast), finance director of Anka, which provides local merchants with integrated digital management solutions.

 Margaret Junior Europe: Allyah Semiai (France). At the age of 14, she developed a progressive web application to fight against school bullying: reports, help, and support for victims, testimonies of former victims, etc. 

Margaret Junior Africa: Malebina Tsotsotso (South Africa).  At the age of 15, she launched MTutor, an e-learning platform designed to provide an adaptable, scalable, safe, and secure learning tool. 

 Jury’s Favorite Award: Shamim Nabuuma Kaliisa (Uganda) founder and executive director of Chil AI Lab, a start-up that offers artificial intelligence technology to improve access to cancer diagnosis in reproductive health.

 “In 10 years, we have managed to remove the preconceptions about digital professions, but equality in funding between women and men must be achieved”

Margaret Award winners will benefit from JFD’s growth acceleration program for one year including media exposure worth €1 million, coaching in collaboration with JFD partners (Anaplan, Eramet, Salesforce or Dassault Systèmes etc.) and speaking opportunities at international events and access to JFD partners’ networks, as well as the JFD Club. They will also receive digital equipment and financial support.

 Allyah Semiai and Malebina Tsotsotso, the two Margaret Juniors, will benefit from JFD’s growth acceleration program to develop their entrepreneurial project, a scholarship, and will digitally participate in the ARTEMIS I mission, the first preparatory flight for a human return to the Moon.

Delphine Rémy-Boutang now wishes to go further. “In 10 years, we have succeeded in removing preconceived ideas about the digital professions, but we still need to achieve equality between men and women in terms of funding. That’s why I will now focus on financing women entrepreneurs,” she said. 

Founded in 2012, JFD has so far trained 6,000 talents and accelerated the growth of over 500 startups in Europe and Africa.  

 For more information: https://www.joinjfd.com

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