This week the Anzisha Prize announced that the 2020 winners of the award, with first place going to  Alaa Moatamed, a 21-year old female entrepreneur entrepreneur whose venture provides business owners with an affordable and convenient delivery service for customers. The winner also gets $25 000 in prize money.

EdTech entrepreneur Matina Razafimahefa, 22, from Madagascar emerged as the first runner-up ($15,000), while 22-year-old infrastructure entrepreneur, Mohamed Bah from Sierra Leone, was the second runner up ($12,500).

The three winners stood out from a pool of 20 talented finalists from more than 15 African countries. The 20 finalists were selected from an initial pool of more than 1,000 young entrepreneurs, up from 600 in 2019.

The Anzisha Prize, which celebrates its 10th year, seeks to fundamentally and significantly increase the number of job generative entrepreneurs in Africa. The competition attracted applicants from more than 30 African countries, across multiple sectors.

Each of the 20 finalists, who made it through the rigorous selection process, will receive $2,500 and an opportunity to join a fellowship of 122 entrepreneurs who will receive venture building support and mentorship. Since 2011, Anzisha Fellows have created over 2,000 jobs, 56% of which have been for young Africans under the age of 25.

More about Alaa Moatamed

Moatamed has a long history of entrepreneurship. In 2016, she participated in Eyouth, where she co-founded and headed her first initiative "Fettrah", a project that aimed to teach people with mental disabilities.

After Fettrah, she went on to co-found CFI "Camps for Intelligent," an organisation targeting youth aged 12 to 17 that provided them with skills not offered in traditional schools like art and design, Android and web design, and languages. Through CFI, Moatamed and her team reached more than 70 young people. Post 2017, she worked as a community manager for a cloud co-working space, one of the leading business hubs in Al Minya, Egypt. With the sum of her experiences, Moatamed co-founded Presto.

Presto is an automated delivery system that connects vendors with customers and suppliers. The platform provides a crowd-sourced network of delivery agents for small businesses. Presto has been successful since it launched in 2019 and serves 300 stores and merchants in two cities.

“Across upper Egypt, I saw people suffering from the problem we are solving and I wanted to try my best to help them, especially small businesses owned by women. I want to expand my service across Africa to help women who are suffering from operational hassles,” she said.

The runners-up

The first runner up, Matina Razafimahefa, is the founder of Sayna, an innovative EdTech venture. Her business sources, trains, and produces highly equipped young Africans in industry-specific digital skills.

Since its inception, the venture has expanded its training to Comoros, Ivory Coast, Benin, and Senegal. To date, Sayna has placed 80% of its students in the global IT marketplace.

Second runner up, Mohamed Bah, is the founder of Information for All (IFA) – a venture that constructs drills and repairs water wells and toilets, which ensures water sustainability and hygiene for water deprived communities. To date, the IFA team has drilled over 20 wells and provided clean water to thousands of people

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