Seedstars World, the biggest startup competition focused only in emerging markets and fast-growing startup scenes crowned Ghana-based startup Agrocenta which is tackling food access and stock flow issues across Ghana communities, as Seedstars Global Winner 2018 winning up to USD$500,000 in equity investment and some unique growth opportunities.
“Agrocenta won this prize because of the disruption they are creating in the farming industry. It’s very important that investors know that talent is everywhere and that the way startups and tech entrepreneurs in emerging markets are addressing the underlying social challenges in their home countries, be it agriculture or access to finance, basic education, healthcare or energy supply is a tremendous business trend and opportunity,” Francis Obirikorang Founder of Agrocenta said at the award ceremonial.
The startup was selected from 12 finalists; CMED (Bangladesh), Celcoin (Brazil), Agrocenta (Ghana), Junkbot Robotics (UAE), Redcapital (Chile), Payit (Mexico), Eve.calls (Ukraine), GiftedMom (Cameroon), KarGo (Myanmar), Medsaf (Nigeria), SayurBox (Indonesia), and EMGuidance , finalist startup from (South Africa) out of the 65 startups that made it to the global pitch; including Uganda’s digital loans startup; Numida.
The 65 startups participated in a two-day bootcamp; a private Investor Forum where they had the chance to pitch to be considered one of the 12 finalists to compete on the main stage and attended more than 700 one-on-one sessions with investors.
On the Summit Day, the finalist startups pitched, where the jury, an international panel which included Benjamin Benaïm, from Seedstars, Nikunj Jinsi and Theta Capital Group decided that this year’s investment will go to Agrocenta from Ghana.
On top of the USD $500,000 investment prize for the Seedstars Global Winner, Seedstars and its partners; Enel Green Power, BBVA Open Talent, Merck, HEG Fribourg, TRECC, and Tag Heuer awarded 7 additional prizes.
- EDVES, from Nigeria, was awarded the Transforming Education Prize, by TRECC and School of Management Fribourg (HEG Fribourg), winning access to the Seedstars Growth Program worth USD$50,000.
- Finchat Technologies, from Singapore, won the BBVA Open Innovation Prize, receiving an opportunity to participate at their annual BBVA Open Summit in Madrid and network with the most relevant players from their international fintech network
- Solar Freeze, from Kenya, was the winner of the Africa Energy Prize by Enel X, which rewards the startup for its innovative solution to provide solar-powered cold storage units to smallholder farmers with no need for grid connection in Sub-Saharan Africa. Solar Freeze won access to a three-month programme worth USD$50,000 in acceleration services.
- EMGuidance, from South Africa, was awarded the Health Tech prize by Merck. The prize combines joining Merck Accelerator with financial support of up to EUROS 50,000 and office space at the Merck Innovation Center, mentoring, and coaching.
- TAG Heuer, Seedstars World official time keeper, decided to partner with Seedstars Summit to highlight the role of women entrepreneurs in their own ecosystems and awarded Medsaf, from Nigeria, the Best Woman Entrepreneur prize.
- Alquilando, from Argentina, won the Time Saviour Prize, by TAG Heuer, for their solution to simplify rental process, minimize risk and guarantee rent payments on time, considered to be the one which allows users to save more time of their lives.
- Innovation Prize, also by TAG Heuer, was awarded to CMED, from Bangladesh.
- Public Prize: one of the highlights of the day is when the public gets to vote for its favorite startup. This year, the Office for Economic Affairs (SPECo) has decided to power it by bestowing the winner, Junkbot Robotics, with a premium gift from Veuve Clicquot, a company from Switzerland and all the support from Canton de Vaud in the future.