Tech Digital Africa has highlighted three projects for the continent’s digital entrepreneurs
Digital Africa’s members met in a general assembly on June 10, 2020 to define new orientations through an ambitious action plan to make digital entrepreneurs the first stakeholders in the African economic recovery.
By Blame Ekoué
In a context marked by the Covid 19 pandemic and its impact on societies and economies worldwide, Digital Africa announced, at the end of its general assembly held on 10 June, its most ambitious new roadmap, to support the entrepreneurs in the continent. The new action plan includes the launch of three projects dedicated to support high-potential start-ups. Digital Africa’s ambition in fine.
“We are resolutely looking to the future and to the new generation of digital entrepreneurs”
The first project highlighted, “Digital Africa Campus”, the first part of which is entitled “Resilient Summer School”, is a capacity building program for young champions that aims to support high-potential start-ups through the organization of mentoring sessions and online master classes. The second, “Data 4 Digital Africa” will establish an open data infrastructure to enable the entrepreneurs and creators of digital solutions to test their models with open source data in the areas of agriculture and mobility. The last one, “Africa Next Round”, is a program to facilitate co-investment in innovative African high-growthcompanies. As part of the last project, Digital Africa is planning to pool the local ecosystems by bringing together Anglophone and Francophone stakeholders to accelerate co-investments in high-growth and internationally-potential companies, through the organization of e-pitch sessions. “Africa Next Round is another way of saying: “Africa Next Innovation”, “Africa Next Leapfrog” or “Africa Next Business Leaders”. With this co-financing project for high-potential African entrepreneurs, we are resolutely looking to the future and to the new generation of digital entrepreneurs: those who combine courage and their elders’ skills with the ability to provide “made in Africa” solutions potentially exportable outside the continent”, said Khaled Ben JILANI, senior Partner and member of the executive committee of AfricInvest, partner of Digital Africa.
“With these actions, Digital Africa will provide the digital entrepreneurs with a perfectly-adapted support to ensure their development”
To carry out the three projects involved in the roadmap, Digital Africa’s team has been partially renewed under the leadership of a new Vice-Chairperson, Kizito Okechukwu, founder of 22 ON SLOANE, a campus of 100 start-ups that has become a reference, and Co-chairperson of Global Entrepreneurship Network Africa. The Nigerian operator with a pan-African background has ambitions for Digital Africa and for his continent. “Our priorities include support for high-impact business projects, access to open data for technical development and financing for commercial deployment. With these actions, Digital Africa will provide the digital entrepreneurs with a perfectly-adapted support to ensure their development. This is the model we will use to make a long-term difference and enable African start-ups to have an international footprint and become global brands. »
A platform dedicated to technological innovation
Digital Africa also announced, at its General Assembly, the launch of resilient.digital-africa.coWebsite, a platform to explore technological innovation’s key areas in Africa. With two main sections, News and Use Case, the Website will provide forward-looking views on the ‘African resilience model’ and a database of future solutions to be read, seen and heard through video clips.
Finally, the agenda also includes the launch, next July, of collaboration workshops with the initiative’s African members and partners to listen to each other’s proposals and share good practices. The discussions will focus on how to make the three main strategic areas operational. At the end of the discussions, a white paper including the Digital Africa’s three-year program will be presented. “The forthcoming white paper, which is part of a shared development approach, will give us the means to achieve our ambition of identifying breakthrough innovations imagined in Africa and to support their scaling up”, said Rima Le Coguic, Director for Africa at the Agence française de développement(AFD).
As a reminder, launched in 2018 by President Emmanuel Macron, Digital Africa is seeking to support African digital entrepreneurs in designing and deploying resilient and inclusive innovations for the continent’s communities and economies. Digital Africa works in all areas essential to the development of digital entrepreneurship.