8 Tech Startups Set To Become Africa’s Unicorns

By Lillian Mutiso AFKI Original Published: March 30, 2016, 6:13 am
tech startupsImage: techmoran.com

Technology is fast transforming Africa in different sectors. It is a major employer especially in the continent’s educated youth.

After raising about $186 million in funding in 2015, according to a Disrupt Africa compilation, tech startups in Africa have started 2016 on high note, with some of them reaching for the $1 billion valuation mark, which may make them the Africa’s unicorns.

Below are some of the tech startups that are set to become unicorns.

Sources; CNBC, IT NEWS AFRICA, Forbes, BBC, Changemakers, The Guardian

Image: techmoran.com

Image: techmoran.com

Jumia

It was launched in 2012 in Lagos, Nigeria. It is an online market place where people can purchase a wide range of products and have them delivered at their homes or workplaces. The startup is funded by telecommunications company, MTN and Millicom which develops and operates cellular networks in Africa. It offers services in 15 countries in Africa. In February, its parent company, Africa Internet Group, raise $84 million for an eight percent stake from French Insurance giant AXA, which put its valuation at slightly above $1 billion.

From L to R Kamil Nabong, David Osei, Philips Effah (Image: cp-africa.com)

From L to R Kamil Nabong, David Osei, Philips Effah (Image: cp-africa.com)

Dropifi

It was founded by David Osei, Philips Effah and Kamil Nabong in 2011 in Ghana. It is an online tool that helps companies to monitor and evaluate feedback from their customers. It is spread in over 30 countries across the continent. In 2012, it was named the best start-up in the Global Start-Up Open Competition in United States of America. It was also the first African startup to join Silicon Valley’s 500 Startups, in April 2013. Spread in more than 30 countries.

Image: pulse.ng

Image: pulse.ng

meQasa

It was founded in 2013 by Kelvin Nyame, Rashad Seini and Kofi Amuasi, graduates of Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology in Accra, Ghana.  It is a real estate platform that is based on the internet and mobile phone technology. It enables players and professionals in the real estate industry to interact and conduct business online. It saves them the need for physical meetings. It is also a meeting platform for tenants and landlords. It is developing one of the continent’s databases that hold information on real estate in the continent.  In October 2015, it acquired $500,000 of investment from Frontier Digital Ventures in Malaysia.

Image: blog.pesapal.com

Image: blog.pesapal.com

PesaPal

It was founded by Agosta Liko in 2010. It is an online and mobile payment platform. It enables users to buy goods and pay for services through services such M-pesa, MasterCard, Pesapal e-Wallet and others. It is available in Zambia, Tanzania, Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda and Zimbabwe, setting itself apart from other tech startups.

image: news.arabnet.me

image: news.arabnet.me

Yaoota

It is an online shopping application, like many other tech startups, that was founded in July 2014. It is used in Egypt and helps interested customers to compare different products and their prices, from a wide range of online stores. In October 2015, the tech startup raised a total of $2.7 million to help in its plans to expand further in the Middle East and Africa. This is the biggest investment in a startup in the country. One of the leading online stores hosted by Yaoota is Jumia.

SafeMotos Team Member Eric on a moto taxi (Image: disrupt-africa.com)

SafeMotos Team Member Eric on a moto taxi (Image: disrupt-africa.com)

SafeMotos

This is an online motorbike hailing application used in Rwanda, Eastern Africa. It was founded by Barret Nash and Peter Kariuki in 2014. They came up with the idea after surviving a motorbike accident in the Rwandan capital, Kigali. It helps customers to order for motorbike services through their smart phones.  They can also pay through their SafeMoto wallets. The application has improved safety because drivers have a smart phones installed with an application that records their speed and other that that helps in determining safety measures. It raised more than $130,000, the biggest in the country so far. It plans to expand into Uganda, Cameroon and the rest of the continent.

Image: gistnetwork.org

Image: gistnetwork.org

DabaDoc

It was started in 2013 by Zineb Drissi Kaitouni and her brother, Driss in Morocco. It is an internet-based application that helps patients to book appointments with doctors online. It is the leading medical booking platform in North Africa. It is used in neighboring Algeria, Tunisia, Nigeria and South Africa. It has more than 2,000 doctors spread across these countries.

Image: iafriq.com

Image: iafriq.com

Njorku

It was started by Churchill Mambe Nanje, a Cameroonian tech-preneur in March 2011. It helps unemployed African search for jobs in their locations. It is exclusively for people in Africa. Njorku means elephant in the Dikome Balue language. It searches for available jobs and career opportunities in different company websites and lists them. Anyone who logs in to search for a job is a bale to get the available opportunities and all details relevant to a specified job. Like many tech startups, it gets revenue through user subscriptions and also paid advertisements by various companies and organizations across the continent. It is spread in seven countries and has about one million users annually.

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