Seedstars World, the global seed-stage startup competition for emerging markets and fast-growing startup scenes brought its Mali round to a successful close during Seedstars Bamako. The event took place for the first time this Sunday at Impact Hub Bamako, which is the local ambassador for Seedstars World and co-organized the event. The 8 selected startups were invited to present their ideas in front of the local jury panel.
“It was an amazing experience to have Seedstars World organize the event in Bamako. I saw a group of amazingly enthusiastic entrepreneurs who will show the world that we have amazing talent in the country.” says Mohamed Keita, CEO and Founder of Impact Hub Bamako.
The local winner, Aikio Corp, a platform for medical laboratories to transmit medical test results to patients safely and confidentially online and by sms, was selected the best startup in Mali. “I’m on a mission to improve healthcare in Africa and I believe that my solution is one that is relevant for many and can literally save lives.” explains Boubacar Keita, founder and CEO of Aikio Corp. As a part of the prize, Aikio Corp will be participating at Seedstars Summit, taking place in Switzerland in April 2017, a weeklong training program with the opportunity to meet the other 60 winners, as well as investors and mentors from around the world. Traditionally, the final day of the Summit will be dedicated to pitching in front of audience of 1000 attendees, with the possibility of winning up to the USD 1 million equity investment.
1st runner up is Transup, a technology that allows anyone to transfer phone credit between different operators. Feuze, an electronic device that allows for registration, insurance and geolocation of motorbikes, grabbed the last spot in the top 3. The other startups invited to pitch were Pharmoso, E-Keneya, AllianceJ, Orientkey, HVM.
The 10 startups pitched in front of a prestigious jury, including Claudia Makadristo, Associate for Africa at Seedstars World, Soline Miniere, Senior Investment Associate at Crossboundary, Fayelle Ouane Co-founder Impact Hub, Issa Toure, Head of Finance at CRS and Sidi Yattara, Consular Officer at Global Affairs Canada.
“We were very impressed by the talent that was showcased during the SSW Bamako event. Mali is yet again an example that proves that it is not about where you are from, but what you do. We are very excited to bring Aikio Corp to our global summit and hope that this event will inspire young talented people in the country to start their own businesses.” says Claudia Makadristo, Associate for Seedstars World Africa.
Seedstars Bamako also featured speaker mr. Bally, CEO and President of Azalaï Hotels, who spoke about his experience of an entrepreneurs and how important it is to stay humble, modest and focused. “great entrepreneurs have humility, resilience, and good debt to equity ratio”.
All participating startups will also qualify for two major prizes that Seedstars World is running this year:
Together with TRECC Startups in Education qualify for the global “Transforming Education Prize” which will award the best startup in the education space from around the world with a prize of over USD 50,000. In addition, Seedstars World and Intel are collaborating on the “Intel Solutions Challenge” to find the best startups in Hardware, IoT, Cloud and Analytics with the goal of inviting them to a prestigious Demo Day with internal and external partners who will give access to market and funding for the best startups.
Continuing on its world tour of startup scenes in emerging markets and fast-growing startup scenes, Seedstars World’s next stop is Ethiopia at Addis Abbaba’s Ice Addis, to select the best startup in the country. Seedstars World is looking for smart startups that solve regional issues and/or develop profitable products for the global market.