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Tech startups selected for third Google Launchpad Africa accelerator

Twelve tech startups have been selected for the third Google Launchpad Africa accelerator. The three-month programme connects startups from around the world with Google staff, networks, methodologies and technologies, and has worked with market leaders in over 40 countries.

Google has named the third cohort of startups for its Launchpad accelerator programme. The cohort has 12 from six African countries: Nigeria, Kenya, Egypt, Senegal, South Africa and Uganda. Of these 12 startups, six have female co-founders and nine are either AI-enabled or have AI potential, according to the business magazine Business Today.

The publication details that the selected startups will receive three months of intense mentorship and support from Google, Cloud and Firebase Credits, three weeks all-expenses-paid training at Launchpad Accelerator Africa (Lagos and Nairobi), access to Google engineers, resources and mentors during and after the programme and inclusion in the Launchpad Accelerator Global Community and network of alumni and mentors.

Fola Olatunji-David, Google’s head of Startup Success and Services, Launchpad Africa, said, “These companies will join other startups in the Launchpad programme, present and past, that are using technology to create a positive impact on key industries in their region. We look forward to supporting and connecting them with startup ecosystems around the world.”

Kenya is leading the way with the highest representation of four startups, with Nigeria following closely behind with three.

Read: Tony Elumelu Foundation to launch world’s largest digital platform to connect African entrepreneurs

The 12 startups are:

  • 54Gene (Nigeria): Improves drug discovery by researching multiple genetically diverse African populations.
  • Data Integrated Limited (Kenya): Automates and digitises SME payments, connecting the street to high finance.
  • me (Egypt): Connects patients to credible nutritionists and dietitians online to help them maintain a healthy and optimal weight.
  • Kwara (Kenya): Provides a rich digital banking platform to established fair lenders such as credit unions or savings and credit cooperatives (SACCOs), with an open API to enable and accelerate their inclusion into the formal financial ecosystem.
  • OkHi (Kenya): A physical addressing platform for emerging markets that is on a mission to enable the 4 billion people without a physical address to “be included”.
  • PAPS (Senegal): A logistics startup with a strong client-care orientation, focused on last mile delivery in the domestic market, featuring live tracking, an intelligent address system and automatic dispatch.
  • ScholarX (Nigeria): An education start-up that connects high-potential students with funding opportunities to help them advance in their studies.
  • Tambua Health Inc. (Kenya): The Tambua App turns a normal smartphone into a powerful, non-invasive diagnostic tool for Tuberculosis and Pneumonia. It uses a cough sound acoustic signature, symptoms, risk factors and clinical information to come up with a diagnostic report.
  • ai (South Africa): Voyc.ai’s CX Research Platform helps companies understand their customers by turning their customer research into insights, personas and customer journey maps.
  • WellaHealth (Nigeria): A pharmacy marketplace for affordable high-quality disease care (such as malaria treatment) driven by artificial intelligence.
  • Zelda Learning (South Africa): Provides free online career guidance for students looking to enter university and then links them to funding and study opportunities.

Since its inception in 2017, Launchpad Accelerator Africa has formed an important part of Google’s initiatives that support the African entrepreneurial ecosystem and builds on the Launchpad programmes already being run in Africa.

Read: The Future Is African: An Interview with Gerald Chirinda

Founder of Launchpad Accelerator, Roy Glasberg, said in a statement, “The startups chosen represent those using technology to create a positive impact on key industries in their region and we look forward to supporting them and connecting them with startup ecosystems around the world.”

So far, 23 startups have graduated from the first two Launchpad Accelerator Africa classes and the programme has helped the participating startups to create jobs and, collectively, raise millions of dollars in funding.

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