Ecobank Backs Start-ups with $500,000

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THE Ecobank Transnational Incorporated has launched Ecobank Fintech Challenge, a competition for African technology start-ups to build and deploy innovative fintech and banking solutions across the continent. The lender said it was currently accepting applications from start-ups and developers in all 54 African countries.

In a statement, Ecobank said, “Twenty finalists of the Fintech Challenge will be invited to an award ceremony and an innovation fair at the global headquarters of Ecobank in Lome, Togo. The top three start-ups at the fair will win cash prizes worth $10,000, $7,000, and $5,000 respectively. The finalists will also be conferred Ecobank Innovation Fellows and will qualify to explore a once-in-a-lifetime partnership opportunity with Ecobank Group that includes major start-up funding worth up to $500,000.”

The lender listed them as multinational product rollout for the most commercially viable start-ups to launch their products in Ecobank’s 33 markets across Africa; service provider partner deals for start-ups with deep capabilities to become a pan-African service partner within Ecobank’s country ecosystem; and mentoring and networking support for founders to be honoured with the Ecobank Innovation Fellow for a period of one year, “granting them access to networking and mentoring from Ecobank’s vast global network of technology leaders, fintech experts, investors and management coaches.”

Ade Ayeyemi, group chief executive officer, Ecobank, was quoted as saying, “This is one of the biggest support packages put together by any bank or investor to support Africa’s technology start-ups. Fintech is the future of banking; that is why we are opening our doors and vast market infrastructure to support Africa’s brightest innovators.”

Eddy Ogbogu, group executive for operations and technology, Ecobank, said, “At the core of Ecobank Fintech Challenge is a mission to drive Africa’s fintech revolution. Ecobank is committing resources to this initiative to support the most serious product innovators and fintech companies to grow.”

—  Feb 20, 2017 @ 01:00 GMT

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