WINNERS ANNOUNCED AT THE FIRST ANNUAL SOUTHERN AFRICA STARTUP AWARDS
Following a rigorous process of nominations, public voting and adjudication, on Thursday 22 November 2018 at the regional Grand Finale of Southern Africa Startup Awards, 15 winners in 15 categories, from 14 participating SADC countries were announced.
Prior to the Grand Finale, more than 3000 nominees went through public voting and adjudication in their home countries to win the national round. The winners from here were then further judged and ranked by an esteemed panel of international judges, whose decision was eventually combined with individual public votes from across the globe to win at the regional Grand Finale of the 2018 Southern Africa Startup Awards.
The event, which was hosted at the illustrious Steyn City development in the North of Johannesburg, in collaboration with LIMIT BREAKERS GLOBAL FOUNDATION, brought together some of the most sought after startups, startup supporters and investors in the region in conversation and celebration.
True to their mission of regional interconnectedness, the 2 day awards event kicked off with attendees engaging in deep and challenging conversation, first with a panel discussion on innovative platforms to fund startups in Africa, and then a round table discussion among the startup ecosystem about the state of investment readiness and what can be put in place to bridge the ever widening gap between great startups and investors.
About the round table discussion, Founder of Growthwheel, Hilton Theunissen said “This offers a unique opportunity for investors, startup supporters and startups to sit around the same table and really get into ecosystem issues.”
Founder of LIMIT BREAKERS GLOBAL FOUNDATION, and discussion facilitator at the event, Nokuthula (Nokky) Ndlovu put the challenge to all in the room that “We should not end this at discussion, but rather commit ourselves to action, as we become deliberate about growing startups, creating an environment for tech innovation to thrive, and opportunities to promote diversity, particularly inclusion of women in tech.”
Startup of the Year | Easy Equities | South Africa
Female Role Model in Tech | Lilian Makoi | Tanzania
Founder of the Year | Kennedy Liswani | Namibia
Best Startup Ecosystem Initiative | Simodisa | South Africa
Best Student Startup | EcOrganics | Mauritius
Best Social Impact Startup | Yapili | Botswana
Best Food/Agri Tech | LimaLinks | Zambia
Investor of the Year | Lireas Holdings | South Africa
Best Accelerator/Incubator Programme | Startupbootcamp Afritech | South Africa
Best Co-Working Space | CoWorkLab | Mozambique
Best Newcomer | Intergreatme | South Africa
Best EduTech Startup | Kamaleon | Mozambique
Best Fintech Startup | Easy Equities | South Africa
Best Water Crisis Management Solution | Solve Namibia | Namibia
People’s Choice | Lynette Hundermark | South Africa
Six of the categories, including Startup of The Year, Best Newcomer, Founder of the Year, Best Startup Accelerator/Incubator, Best co-working Space and the People’s Choice are represented in the Global Startup Awards, which means winners will compete with winners in 6 other regions for the global accolade to be announced in 2019.
Attendees and finalists alike were treated to a nice surprise when Dave Romero, founder and CEO of CABAN Investments Ltd, which is in partnership with Southern Africa Startup Awards, announced a surprise prize for the winner of Startup of the Year, and for their best pick from the investor speed dating. The prize includes full capitalization and scaling to multiple territories in Africa and the UK.
Winners were also offered web services which includes Website design, hosting and managed services for 12 months to the value of R150 000 by Kaskade.Cloud
The COO of Southern Africa Startup Awards, Flo Mosoane, added that “our aim is to create a platform and channel for effective relationship building in the startup ecosystem. We hope to have achieved that with this event”. “I attended lots of awards ceremonies and this was authentic and memorable in so many ways” Said Lynette Hundermark, the winner of the People’s Choice Award when asked about her experience.
In an emotional address, CEO of Southern Africa Startup Awards Mckevin Ayaba said “ “This would not be possible without the relentless efforts of the SASAWARDS Team but above all, the collaboration with our amazing partners, Limit Breakers Global Foundation, Geekulcha, Silicon Cape, Caban Investments Ltd, Inventio, SAIS Programme, Network on SABC, ITWeb Africa, Tech In Africa, MAD Productions and Global Startup Awards”.
Southern Africa Startup Awards is a circuit of the world renowned Global Startup Awards, which provides an annual spotlight on web/tech startups in regions across the globe with focus on startups around 5 years old, highlighting up-and-coming and established technology talent globally. Entries are judged by an esteemed panel of judges, all leaders in the respective fields, as well as by public vote. Global Startup Awards is the largest independent startup-ecosystem competition started in the Nordics in 2012, covering more than 45 countries in 7 regions.
Since 2012, Global Startup Awards has grown to include South East Asia, Central Europe, SAARC Region (South Asia), and now East Asia, Baltics and Southern Africa which launched in 2018.