TechInAfrica – Vodacom Tanzania and Smart Lab have launched a new annual accelerator program with early-stage and growth-stage technology startups in mind. Called the ‘Vodacom Digital Accelerator’ and will support startup entrepreneurs in the mobile, telecom, fintech, media, health, education, and e-commerce field. Vodacom is investing more than 150,000 dollars into the accelerator program which will go towards educating and empowering Tanzania‘s youth.
“We are excited to be part of the “Vodacom Accelerator” and together with Vodacom, we hope to create a brand-building platform for the tech-savvy youth. This program is in line with our corporate strategy to drive messaging around youth support in the digital age and we are grateful for Vodacom Tanzania who saw the need to create the next round of success stories for African entrepreneurs building fast-growing technology companies coming from within the country. The innovation community has mushroomed in Tanzania from just a handful of hubs in 2011 to more than 45 in 2019 but there has been a slower involvement from the corporate side whereas Vodacom in this partnership with Smart Lab will lead in bridging that gap. We look forward to a tech-evolved-future for Tanzania that is full of disruptive solutions which will positively impact the coming generations,” Edwin Bruno, the Smart Codes Chief Executive Officer, said.
Hisham Hendi, Vodacom Tanzania Plc’s Managing Director said that the partnership with Smart Lab will allow startups and innovators to showcase their products and gain exclusive partnership deals with Vodacom, as well as mentorship, technical assistance, marketing and exposure to Vodacom, and Smart Lab’s large network of partners and customers to test and experience their solution.
During the program, participants will update their progress to a panel of investors and associates at the end of the 3-month schedule. The chosen winners will receive further support from Vodacom Tanzania Plc, Smart Lab, and related partners for an additional 6 months.