AfricArena West Africa Summit - Event recap and winning startups
Updated: Jun 29
AfricArena hosted the West Africa Summit, which took place from 21 to 23 June in Dakar, Senegal. The 3-day conference featured pitches from 20+ startups operating in West Africa, between Seed stage and Growth stage, as well as keynotes and panel discussions from the top minds in business, tech and investment in the region.
AfricArena, in partnership with DER/FJ (Délégation Générale à l’Entreprenariat Rapide des Femmes et des Jeunes, Senegal Government) and United Nations International Trade Centre #FastTrackTech Africa project, are proud to conclude the West Africa Summit by highlighting the participating startups, winners and content.
AfricArena is an African tech ecosystem accelerator. Through events, AfricArena accelerates the growth of tech startups and the ecosystems in which they operate by providing a platform where they can share their business model, gain valuable networks and attain funding. The West Africa Summit is the second of four regional events AfricArena will host across the continent. The 3-day hybrid event brought together startups, investors, corporations, public and global institution representatives, and other key stakeholders operating in the region.
The West Africa Summit took place in Dakar, Senegal (Radisson Blu Hotel) on 22 and 23 June 2021. A day preceding the conference, pitching startups took part in a series of workshops facilitated by the local incubator, Impact Hub Dakar, at the DER/FJ’s newly developed innovation space, DHub. The “Founders bootcamp” featured presentations from investors (Brightmore Capital), well-funded entrepreneurs (Paps CEO, Bamba LO) and experts in business development.
Parallel to the Founders Bootcamp was the West Africa VC Unconference - where Africa-focused startup investors and VCs, particularly active in Francophone Africa, took part in discussions and workshops centred around co-investing, open source data tools, regulations and how to ease the process in investing in tech startups on the continent.
Over the 2 days, the Summit had 20 startups showcase their innovative solutions. Most of these startups were pre-selected through a series of virtual pitch sessions that took place between 25 May and 10 June 2021, with consultation with various investors active in West Africa. The pitch sessions were divided into three tracks: seed stage, series A and growth/late stage; with startup pitching from Senegal, Côte d'Ivoire, Benin, Nigeria, Ghana and Gambia.
Assuraf (Senegal); Chekkit (Nigeria); CodeLN (Nigeria); Fleeti (Senegal); GoMedical (Benin); Logidoo (Senegal); Spleet (Nigeria); Xeel.io (Senegal); Zencey (Côte d’Ivoire); Parc Smart (Senegal); Mon Artisan (Côte d'Ivoire); Outboost Media and Analytics (Gambia), and REMA (Benin).
Series A track:
BezoMoney (Ghana); Moja Ride (Côte d’Ivoire); MVX (Nigeria),and Yobante Express (Senegal).
Growth stage track:
Afrikrea (Côte d’Ivoire); CoinAfrique (Senegal), and Farmcrowdy (Nigeria)
Best seed stage: Zencey
Best Series A: Moja Ride
Best Growth stage: CoinAfrique
Most innovative business model: Assuraf
Most promising entrepreneur: Elohor Thomas (CEO of CodeLN)