10 African Startups to follow [Updated 2019]

Over the last months, Disrupt Africa, the leading African startup news and information outlet has seen the rise of hundreds of innovative startups. Among this crowd, which ones stood out?

We have compiled a list of the top 10 African tech-fueled startups that look poised to shake up the African landscape in 2019, and beyond.

Top 10 Startups in Africa

1. CowTribe (Ghana)

Cowtride was launched back in 2016. Over the past years, the startup has been consistently improving their services and has made 2018 their most successful year yet. Cowtribe offers farmers the opportunity to access legit and affordable animal vaccinations by reaching out to large suppliers. Vaccines can be ordered via USSD, text messages, over the phone and through community agents. All orders are then processed and delivered to the farmers by qualified agents.

In July 2018, Cowtribe was crowned winner of Seedstars Ghana, and a few months later announced its plans to reach all 10 regions of Ghana within 18 months. To match their ambitious and aggressive expansion strategy, the startup secured an investment of $300,000 from USA-based Draper Richards Foundation.

2. Nala (Tanzania)

Tanzania’s Nala has gradually made a name for its simplified mobile money application. The East African startup allows its users to faster and safer transactions without the need for an internet connection. While it was initially developed as a Stanford University student side-project in 2017, the past months has seen the company’s progression accelerate quickly.

Nala has raised $200,000 in funding over 2 rounds, with their latest funding in March 2018 from a Seed round. The startup also won the Ecobank Fintech Challenge, the AppsAfrica Award for Disruptive Innovation and was declared winner of Seedstar Tanzania.

3. Elves (Egypt)

Elves is a virtual assistant app that has been on the rise over the past 18 months. So far, the Egyptian startup still seems to be far from its full potential. The Elves app allows its users to chat with a super-human assistant, built on Artificial Intelligence. The methodology they use to ‘train’ the AI is through human interaction and allows users to do almost any task from anywhere around the world, all for free.

In the beginning of 2018, Elves raised $2 million in seed funding, which allowed them to constantly update their app and implement additional functionalities. Recently, they have opened an office in Los Angeles and are constantly working towards perfecting their app.

4. Taimba (Kenya)

Over the past 2 years, the agri-tech market has boomed in Africa. According to the Agrinnovating for Africa report released by Disrupt Africa, over $19 million was invested in the agri space recently. Kenyan startup Taimba provides a mobile cashless platform that aims to connect farmers with retailers. So far, the B2B platform has improved the supply chain and positively regulated the production cost.

Taimba has won the inaugural Disrupt Africa Live Pitch Competition and was named among the 3 winners of the Food+City Challenge Prize.

5. Shezlong (Egypt)

Shezlong is an Egyptian startup looking to fight off the stigma in North Africa towards mental health issues. Through its advanced online platform, Shezlong allows patients to get in touch with certified and licensed therapists. The sessions / consultations are done through video conferencing, supporting both mobile and desktop platforms.

Shezlong has been around for a few years now but has had a solid run in 2018 – they got accepted in the 500 Startups accelerator program, raised $350,000 in funding and are among the few selected startups to pitch at the annual Africa Early Stage Investor Summit.

6. FinChatBot (South Africa)

FinChatBot, from South Africa, develops chatbots that have for aim to help financial service providers acquire and retain customers, with the use of AI-powered conversations. Last year, the startup has been rapidly making a name for itself in its home country and is now looking to expand to multiple markets across the African continent.

FinChatBot ended 2018 on a high, securing $563,000 in funding from Kalon Venture Partners and Mauritius-based Compass Capital.

7. Appy Saude (Angola)

Appy Saude, from Angola, seeks to tackle one the African continent main challenges – healthcare. This innovative startup allows users to connect to its healthcare database to get access to various information, such as services offered, insurance accepted, contact details, medical specialities and locations. The past 12 months have been very busy for the startup as they are constantly adding new functionalities to their platform.

Recently, Appy Saude has partnered with Unitel, the country’s largest mobile operator, which allows them to tap into more than 12 million users!

8. KudiGO (Ghana)

KudiGo was born with one objective in mind: Redefining Consumer Retail in Africa. The startup was well-met by businesses, who are keen to use their array of services: integrated, mobile-based retail, payments, accounting and analytics engine for the consumer retail industry. Their platform allows businesses to receive payments, track inventories and build sound financial models based on past trends.

KudiGo hit the ground running and has raised $450,000 of funding from Founders Factory Africa, in a single round. Currently, the company seeks to expands over the African continent.

9. Vizibiliti Insight (South Africa)

Vizibiliti Insight makes use of Artificial Intelligence to boost the real estate sector. The South African startup uses AI to give the commercial property sector an edge by enabling them to pre-screen tenants and predict the probability they will default.

Vizibiliti Insight was named overall winner for the Customer Experience Transformation through Digital challenge. They also secured an invitation to collaborate with New York’s Verizon. Last November, the startup was selected to be part of the Knife Capital’s fourth Grindstone Accelerator programme.

10. Halan (Egypt)

For many African cities, transportation is a major pain point. While there are many startups scattered across Africa trying to solve this puzzle, one in particular has been constantly progressing over the past months. Halan, an Egyptian ride-hailing startup has already facilitated over 3 million motorcycle, tuk-tuk and on-demand logistic rides across Egypt and Sudan.

So far, Halan has raised a total of $5 million over 3 rounds. Most of their funding comes from big established companies, such as Singapore’s Battery Road Digital Holdings and Egypts’s Algebra Ventures.

Developing your business in Africa – the Smart Way

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