Ten Kenyan startups have been selected to participate in the Wazo Challenge, where they will compete for a cash grant of US$10,000 (Ksh.1.2 million).
The challenge which is run by Hindsight Ventures targets Kenyans aged between 18 and 30, who have an idea to solve a local business or social problem using technology.
Problems the startups are seeking to solve cut across financial services, healthcare, agriculture, retail, supply chain, and sustainability.
The eleven are Kiri EV, a clean energy startup, Afrigility, an on-demand warehousing solution, creative marketplace Mawu Africa, fresh food supply chain solution StoFresh Africa, and digital mental health care platform DoctorsLive.
Also in the competition are deferred tuition payment service Chaptr Global, internet connectivity platform NikoRadius, agri-tech startup Biosorra, payments platform PayClide, and blood monitoring device NutriTech.
“We see Wazo Challenge as an important, base-of-the-pyramid, startup ecosystem enabler, that helps identify winners at the earliest stage, and support them all the way through scaling-up and fundraising by way of our mentorship,” Hindsight Ventures co-founder and CEO, Ajay Ramasubramaniam, said.
“Our companies have gone on to raise strategic capital and get into international accelerators, and that’s a win for them and the ecosystem at large.”
This will be Wazo Challenge’s maiden round here in Kenya. It has been previously held as a regional version for East Africa and a country version in Tanzania.
It is a four-week venture development bootcamp, led by global mentors and industry partners, which culminates with an investor demo day.
On top of the funding, the selected startups will also get access to other forms of support. Last year’s cohort benefited from India-headquartered accelerator Startup Réseau’s global pool of mentors, investors, industry experts and successful entrepreneurs.
Each startup also got US$150,000 worth of technology credits from technology partners such as FreshWorks, AWS, IBM, Digital Ocean and HubSpot.