The MEST Africa Challenge 2020 is an African tech startup pitch competition for early-stage companies based in Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Kenya, Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal, Tanzania, Ethiopia or Rwanda.

There will be a semi-final competition in reach of the countries and the winners will compete in the Challenge finals at the MEST Africa Summit 2020. Africa finalists will compete on a global stage in front of investors, entrepreneurs, ecosystem players and corporate partners for a chance to win $50k in investment from the Meltwater Foundation, and a shot to join the MEST Africa incubator community.

Criteria

  • Pre-seed or seed-stage (must have raised $100k total or less cumulatively since inception)
  • Currently generating revenue
  • Can demonstrate traction in one or more of the nine MAC Markets (Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Kenya, Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Rwanda)
  • Has been in operations for 2 years or less
  • Tech-enabled (software company)
    Industry agnostic
  • Any business model (B2B, B2C, B2B2C, B2G etc.)
  • Francophone applicants must pitch in English

Timeline

(Exact dates subject to change if the Challenge moves to online)

April 18, 2020: Application portal closes
May 1, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Lagos, Nigeria
May 4, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Johannesburg, South Africa
May 8, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
May 11, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Accra, Ghana
May 11, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Nairobi, Kenya
May 12, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire
May 14, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Kigali, Rwanda
May 18, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
May 22, 2020: Top 10 startups will pitch at MEST Incubator location in Dakar, Senegal

How to apply

All tech start-ups in the listed locations can start their application immediately Deadline is Saturday, April 18, 2020.


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