Many of the problems these startups attempt to solve are rooted in deep personal experiences: One entrepreneur is building an API to make paying across borders, and currencies instantly seamless, because financial transaction barriers cost him his father’s life. Another entrepreneur credits EdTech innovations for bringing him all the way from Ghana to MIT, and is using video vectorization to make video-learning as accessible and affordable as text-messaging. There’s an entrepreneur participating who is using a commodities trading platform to maximize profits while empowering farmers, since the expense of middle-men nearly cost his family their farm.
The Startup Battlefield Africa Finalists are attempting to revolutionize access to goods and services across the continent and beyond: They are trying to take the guesswork out of investing, dramatically decreasing logistics costs, scalably triaging health care through telemedicine, and feeding the demand for African digital content.
The startups participating built innovations for the African context, and creatively solve for questions around how to distribute or scale tech in environments with limited connectivity. Some of these startups are poised to solve big development challenges while turning a profit. Others are taking Africa’s long-standing creative industries digital.
These are all questions we will discuss on-stage between the Startup Battlefield segments with the serial entrepreneurs, investors, and technologists pushing these conversations forward through their work everyday. The full agenda is here.
At Startup Battlefield Africa, an esteemed panel of judges will select a winner in each of the three categories: Productivity and Utility, Social Good, and Gaming and Entertainment.
One overall winner
One overall winner – ‘Sub-Saharan Africa’s Most Promising Startup’ – will win $25,000 USD and an all-expense paid trip for two to San Francisco to compete in TechCrunch’s flagship event: Disrupt SF 2018 (assuming the company still qualifies to compete next year). View the speaker and judge lineup here. Winners will join TechCrunch’s Startup Battlefield Alumni Network. Alumni have collectively raised nearly $7 billion and produced nearly 100 exits and IPOs to date.
Over the last two months, these 15 Startups refined their business models, demos, and messaging with TechCrunch’s Startup Battlefield team and Editors. It culminates onstage with a five-minute pitch and live demo in front of an audience of investors, entrepreneurs, technologists abd those watching through the livestream. Each startup then have six minutes to answer questions from the the panel of judges.
Samantha Stein and Matt Burns will kick off Startup Battlefield at 9:00 AM EAT on Wednesday, October 11th. You can find more information about Startup Battlefield Africa here.