We are living in an increasingly digital age, where all aspects of our lives, from our finances to entertainment, are increasingly lived online. While some have observed the problems that arise due to the digital divide between the developed and developing world, there has also been amazing adoption of tech-based solutions in Africa which suggest a bright future for the continent. Here are 3 tech startups from the continent which we think you should know about.
Paystack – Nigeria
In their own words, Paystack is a technology company solving payments problems for ambitious businesses with a mission to help businesses in Africa become profitable, envied, and loved. They do this by making it easy for merchants to accept credit and debit card payments online from users or customers.
They were recently acquired by Stripe with sources close to the deal confirming that it’s over $200 million. That makes this the biggest startup acquisition to date to come out of Nigeria, as well as Stripe’s biggest acquisition to date anywhere
Paystack currently has around 60,000 customers, including small businesses, larger corporates, fintechs, educational institutions and online betting companies, and the plan will be for it to continue operating independently, the company said.
RideSafe – Kenya
RideSafe is a first time Blockchain based application offering real time Emergency Response solutions to the public motorbike sector in the event of an accident. In doing so this Kenyan startup is insuring motorcycle drivers to ensure they have access to quick, affordable medical care in the event of an accident, with the help of blockchain technology.
RideSafe enables riders to access quick, affordable and quality first aid at the point of an accident, built on a decentralised blockchain application. The startup provides a solution to the problem of safety faced by motorcyclists in Kenya as road accidents are set to match HIV/AIDS as the highest cause of death in low-middle income countries by 2030.
The platform enables a rider to distribute the cost of their care by allowing them to save small premiums of up to US$0.38 per week so they can care worth up to US$30 per visit.
The rider’s premiums are converted into tokens that are stored in an escrow, and can only be paid out to the first responder when specific deliverables have been met, all tracked transparently on the Blockchain.
Kaoun - Tunisia
Kaoun is a company tackling financial inclusion.The company’s first product, Flouci, is a mobile and web app that allows users to create free bank accounts remotely; facilitating the process through an innovative Know Your Customer (KYC) system via smartphone.
A critical component to any startup’s success, the team behind Kaoun is top-notch: co-founders Nebras Jemel, Anis Kallel, and Rostom Bouazizi put their studies in the United States – at Harvard University, University of Rochester, and Columbia University respectively – on hold to come back to Tunisia and build a fintech start-up.
Launched in 2018, Kaoun has already raised funding from two angel investors, and secured key partnerships with two Tunisian banks and the country’s National Digital Certification Agency. This start-up, along with the previous two mentioned have huge potential to deliver change on the continent.