Applications open for best Ghanaian start-ups as global innovation accelerator hosts FastTrack

By Nana Appiah Acquaye, Accra, Ghana

Ghanaian start-ups will be presented with an opportunity to sell themselves and their ideas at the upcoming FastTrack event organised by one of the world’s most influential global innovation accelerators, Startupbootcamp (SBC) in Accra on 22 June 2017 as part of their global tour to find the next big start-up phenomenon.

The Accra FastTrack,  which will be hosted by Workshed Africa, will be seeking applications from disruptive start-ups in industries including blockchain, connected devices, payment solutions, capital markets and asset management, integrated supply chain, e-commerce, alternative financing, identity management, digital connectivity, data and behavioural analytics and enabling technologies.

According to a statement copied to Biztechafrica, a total of 16 FastTrack events are being held across Africa, Europe and the Middle East, and startups can now apply until 20 June to present their ideas to mentors and sponsors for pre-application advice and feedback.

“The aim is to find and grow disruptive start-ups and connect them with dynamic corporates.  We are fundamentally changing the ecosystem and seeing tangible results that validate our methodology. The more we engage the more excited we get at how much talent we unearth at these FastTracks,” Philip Kiracofe, co-MD of Startupbootcamp Cape Town was quoted as saying.

The Co-Founder of Workshed Africa, Andrew Bimpong, noted how the Ghanaian entrepreneurial space has seen a sharp rise in the number of creators and doers over the years and that ideas aimed at solving basic problems and access to medical information, transportation services and even ideas in the food space have sharply been complimented by technology to give entrepreneurs the competitive edge.

He said: “The provision of services like co-working spaces, business advisory and government intervention through policy is set to position Ghana in a whole new light in terms of entrepreneurship. All these factors are making the Ghanaian entrepreneurship space attractive to not only African investors but global players. The time to invest in entrepreneurship in Ghana is now.”

It stated further that from a pool of hundreds of applicants, the 10 most promising teams will be selected and provided with EUR 15,000, 100+ highly engaged industry mentors, free office space, access to funding and a network of industry partners, investors and venture capital firms. The 3-month bootcamp kicks off in September 2017 in Cape Town, South Africa, and will be led by seasoned innovation experts, Zachariah George, Philip Kiracofe, and Paul Nel.

Core sponsors for this first SBC Africa-based programme include big backers BNP Paribas Personal Finance, RCS, and PwC. Support is also given by global sponsors Google cloud, Amazon web services, Intel, and Cisco.

"As one of the leading financial services institutions in Africa, we are constantly looking for innovative ways to improve our credit product offering for our customers and business partners and essentially improve their overall experience,” believes Regan Adams, CEO of RCS.

Startupbootcamp CapeTown was initiated after a trend analysis found more than 160 applications to the global programme originated from African teams in 2016 alone.

Interested teams can apply to attend a FastTrack here: http://bit.ly/capetownft, any mentors that would like to help with the FastTrack can apply here: http://bit.ly/capetownmentor and Startups interested in applying to the 3-month Cape Town program can apply here: https://www.startupbootcamp.org/accelerator/cape-town

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