5 African startups receive funding as part of the GSMA Innovation Fund on Mobile Internet Adoption and Digital Inclusion.
The fund also ran previous offerings and is supported by the UK’s DFID and German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. The fund’s objective is to address the barriers facing mobile internet adoption, affordability, accessibility, security, affordability, digital skills, and safety.
The initiative looks to support SMEs offering innovative new products, business models, and services capable of addressing key barriers to mobile internet adoption and use.
Thus far a total of 598 applications have been received from startups and SMEs spread across Asia and Africa in 44 countries. They have all gone through a rigorous evaluation process followed by a selection from a panel of experts. Among the nine grantees are Nigeria’s ScholarX, Zambia’s WidEnergy, Ethiopia’s Africa 118, Uganda’s Ensibuuko, and Zimbabwe’s Zonful Energy.
The prize money will comprise grants ranging from US$137,000 to US$344,000.