Ecobank’s $500,000 fintech challenge targets Africa’s tech startups

Ecobank has launched Ecobank Fintech Challenge, a contest for African technology start-ups to build and deploy innovative fintech and banking solutions across the continent. The challenge is already accepting applications at from start-ups and developers in all 54 African countries.

Twenty finalists of the Fintech Challenge will be invited to an award ceremony and an innovation fair at the global headquarters of Ecobank in Lomé, Togo. The top three start- ups at the fair will win cash prizes worth US $10,000, US $7,000, and US $5,000 respectively. The finalists will also be conferred Ecobank Innovation Fellows and will qualify to explore a once-in-a-lifetime partnership opportunity with Ecobank Group that include:

  • Major start-up funding: worth up to US $500,000
  • Multinational product roll-out: for the most commercially viable start-ups to launch their products in Ecobank’s 33 markets across Africa
  • Service provider partner deals: for start-ups with deep capabilities to become pan-African service partner within Ecobank’s country ecosystem
  • Mentoring and networking support: founders will be conferred as Ecobank
  • Innovation Fellows for a period of one year, granting them access to networking and mentoring from Ecobank’s vast global network of technology leaders, fintech experts, investors and management coaches

Ade Ayeyemi, Ecobank Group CEO, said: “This is one of the biggest support packages put together by any bank or investor to support Africa’s technology start-ups. Fintech is the future of banking; that is why we are opening our doors and vast market infrastructure to support Africa’s brightest innovators.”

Eddy Ogbogu, Ecobank Group Executive for Operations and Technology said: “At the core of Ecobank Fintech Challenge is a mission to drive Africa’s fintech revolution. Ecobank is committing resources to this initiative to support the most serious product innovators and fintech companies to grow.”

Ecobank Fintech Challenge was designed in partnership with the advisory firm Konfidants and supported by several partners across Africa and the world. Applications for the competition will close on 14 April, 2017.

Applications, which can be submitted online, are being accepted until April 14, 2017.

Founded in Lomé, Togo, in 1988, Ecobank currently has a presence in 33 African countries, namely: Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo (Brazzaville), Congo (Democratic Republic), Côte d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, South Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

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