**As Kenya’s HydroIQ Grabs Startup of the year Africa 2018
By Dipo Olowookere
Winners of the ‘Startup of the Year 2018 competition’ have been announced by Startup.Info following an awards ceremony held in Casablanca at the end of last month.
This year, more than 600 start-ups from 52 different countries took part, more than 12 000 online votes were gathered, and 41 million people reached on social media.
After the first edition of ‘Startup of the year Africa’, the collaborative start-up magazine, Startup.Info, reiterated its commitment to supporting African innovation. With the support of major international groups such as OCP, ENGIE, QWANT, FINANCE INNOVATION, PwC, Labs-NS-Avocats, Holmarcom Group, Royal Air Maroc, as well as 70 media and ecosystem partners, Startup.Info launched the 2nd edition of the contest.
The jury of experts of the competition ‘Startup of the year Africa 2018’ on January 24, 2018 to choose Kenya’s HydroIQ as Startup of the Year Africa 2018.
The firm, founded by Brian Bosire & Victor Shikoli, is a virtual Water Network Operator that brings intelligence in water distribution by preventing leakages on the network and automatic (mobile) billing a payment.
Also announced is Morocco’s Ecodome as the Qwant Public Choice Award winner. The company was founded by Youness Ouazri and it produces ecotouristic housing made of natural soil in the form of domes.
Côte d’Ivoire’s Graci, which had the OCP – AGRITECH Special Prize and was founded by Brou Kouame Yves Laurent.
It is a startup aiming at the development of rice production in Ivory Coast. It proposes a program of production, certification and distribution of Improved Certified Seeds of rice.
For Nigeria’s Peachwater Consulting founded by Okey Ibekwe Esse, it won the ENGIE Special Prize Startup of the year Award.
Peachwater Consulting designs, manufactures and markets Powerstove clean cookstove that is smokeless and generates electricity with 70% less biomass fuel than competitors.
Furthermore, French Semoa was announced winner of the Royal Air Maroc-Africa Diaspora Award. The firm was founded by Edem Adjamagbo and it proposes a solution to the development of e-commerce in Africa by installing payment terminals throughout the continent.
Thea from France was announced winner of the Holmarcom Group Special Prize award and was founded by Dr Eloi MONKAM.
Thea is a medical mobile app that connects patients to doctors for a first diagnosis.
Also, South Africa’s Priyo founded by Palesa Mahlatji was named the PwC – Jury Choice Award. The company has developed a portable solar digital smart computer lab to train youth from underprivileged, under-resourced schools and communities in rural and peri-urban areas on how to use the computer. Priyo trains them in IT: End user computing, ICT, Digital Marketing and E-Learning and links job seekers to online employment opportunities.
In addition, Project Alpha from Madagascar was revealed as the Community Manager of the year award winner.
The firm was founded by Muriel Randriamasimanana and the event agency has its principal activity based on video games and e-sport phenomena.
Business Post gathered that the African startup of the year will receive €10,000 in cash and a €10,000 Visibility Pack amongst others.
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