Finalists Emerge in Ecobank Fintech Challenge 2018

Ecobank Fintech Challenge

By Olubori Oduntan

Leading independent pan-African banking group, Ecobank, has announced the finalists for the 2nd edition of the annual Ecobank Fintech Challenge, a competition for Africa-focused technology start-ups.

A statement issued by the lender disclosed that the list includes 11 fintech start-ups from across the continent and beyond.

An Innovation Fair & Awards ceremony will honour the start-ups on August 30, 2018 at the global headquarters of Ecobank in Lomé, Togo.

At the ceremony, the start-ups will exhibit and pitch their products to a jury for the Ecobank Africa Fintech Prize, which will be awarded the top innovator and two runners-up. The top three innovators will win cash prizes worth $10,000, $7,000, and $5,000 respectively.

After the awards ceremony, Ecobank will enrol all 11 finalists into the Ecobank Fintech Fellowship, which will run for a period of six months during which Ecobank Fintech Fellows will benefit from an opportunity to further explore partnerships with the Ecobank Group that includes multinational product roll-out support: for the start-ups deemed commercially viable to grow their businesses across any of Ecobank’s 33 markets in Africa; service provider & ecosystem partner deals: for start-ups with deep capabilities to become product partners within Ecobank’s ecosystem; and technical & mentoring support: during the six months fellowship period, fellows will benefit from technical support from Ecobank’s global network of technology leaders, fintech experts, investors and management coaches.

Business Post gathered that the 11 start-ups announced by Ecobank are Lypa (Kenya), Wallet.ng (Nigeria)(https://Wallet.ng/), Nala (Tanzania), Litee (Benin), SESO Global (South Africa), InvestED (Sierra Leone), Eversend (France), Secapay (Nigeria), Virtual Identity (South Africa), and MojiPay (Togo), Awamo (Germany).

Group CEO of Ecobank, Mr Ade Ayeyemi, stated that, “At Ecobank our digital strategy is spectacularly successful and has changed the landscape of African banking, so it goes without saying that we see fintech as a vital component for the economic transformation of the continent and the prosperity of its citizens.

“We want to do all we can to encourage the next generations of fintech entrepreneurs as they will be a driving force in propelling Africa into a globally competitive power in commercial services, enjoying significantly increased market share.”

Also commenting, Ecobank Group Executive for Operations and Technology, Eddy Ogbogu, said, “Africa has a proud history of innovation, and today’s fintech start-ups are the potential giants of tomorrow.

“We’re delighted by the quality of our Fintech Challenge finalists and have high hopes that they will capitalise on the mentoring and support opportunities of the Ecobank competition on their journeys to future success.”

The Ecobank Fintech Challenge is designed in partnership with the advisory firm Konfidants and is supported by partners across Africa and the world.

Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan. Mr Olowookere can be reached via dipo.olowookere@businesspost.ng

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