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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Innovation in Africa

By GABRIELLA MULLIGAN 27 January 2017

From mobile money to cargo drones and rugged portable wifi hotspots, Africa’s innovators are generating new technology to tackle consumer needs and development challenges.

New data charting investment activity flowing into Africa’s tech start-ups shows that international investors are taking notice. According to Disrupt Africa, a portal for start-ups and accelerators across the region, tech start-ups on the continent raised more than $129m in 2016.

Overall, 146 start-ups raised investment, a 16.8 per cent rise in the number of funding rounds compared to 2015. 

Financial inclusion remains a challenge across Africa, where only a third of adults have access to any kind of basic financial services, according to the IMF. It makes sense, then, that financial technology – or “fintech” – innovations attracted the most start-up funding in 2016.

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