Africa’s tech startups to take seats at the table of top business executives at the 2020 Africa CEO Forum

Africa CEO Forum
  • The 8th edition of the AFRICA CEO FORUM, will hold from March 9th to 10th, 2020, in Abidjan, hosting more than 20 of the continent’s most promising start-ups.
  • The largest gathering of the African private sector seeks to encourage these innovation pioneers as well as leaders from the continent’s biggest companies to interact and form partnerships with one another.
  • In addition, six African start-ups at the forefront of innovation are in the running for the prestigious Disrupter of the Year award.

The Africa CEO Forum 2020 will feature the continent’s start-ups in a special first-of-its-kind session this year.

According to a statement made available to Business Insider SSA on Monday, February 24th, 2020, the forum’s goal is to put the continent’s most promising disrupters in the spotlight and promote meet and greets with important CEOs who could help accelerate their expansion.

From Cape Town to Dakar, to Lagos, Nairobi, Casablanca, and Cairo, the African tech ecosystem is shaking up the continent’s development models. After raising a record-breaking $2.02 billion in the capital in 2019 (234 start-ups via 250 funding rounds, representing a 74% year-on-year increase according to Partech Africa), the continent’s unicorns continue to find favour with investors.

“Today, African start-ups have reached a new level of maturity. Now that they’ve become essential and indispensable, they’re taking a seat at the table of top African executives to actively participate in the continent’s economic transformation,Samir Abdelkrim, founder of Emerging Valley and author of Startup Lions: Au cœur de l'African Tech.

Representing sectors key to the continent’s development, i.e., health, solar energy, e-commerce, fintech, logistics, digital, food and telecoms, over 20 start-ups – including Twiga Foods, Kobo360, Flutterwave Technology Solutions, 54gene, Element, Paystack, Africa's Talking, and Ringier (ROAM) – will come together at the forum.

"From all four corners of Africa, these unicorns with continental ambitions, who together managed to raise a total of almost $600m over the past two years, will have the opportunity to showcase their respective expertise and business plans through a meet and greet session featuring influential CEOs and investors.

"In parallel, a brand-new kind of session focused on sectoral outlook will give four African start-up entrepreneurs the chance to share their vision of the future of their sector through dynamic ten-minute presentations," the statement added.

Six major start-ups at the forefront of innovation in fintech (Flutterwave Technology Solutions), health (54gene), solar energy (Fonroche Lighting and Daystar Power Group), financial inclusion (Baobab+) and e-commerce (Ringier One Africa Media) are in for the Disrupter of the Year award.

The prestigious award will be bestowed during the AFRICA CEO FORUM AWARDS ceremony.

The judging panel is made up of African tech experts and CEOs from influential companies, including Samir Abdelkrim, founder of Emerging Valley, Elisabeth Moreno, Managing Director of HP Africa; Elisabeth Medou-Badang, Senior Vice President and Spokesperson of Orange Middle East and Africa; Mohammed Dewji, CEO & President of MeTL; and Ife Oyedele II, the co-founder of Kobo 360, and previous recipient of the Disrupter of the Year award.

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