Egyptian Entrepreneur, Alaa Moatamed, 21 emerges as the overall winner of the 10th edition of the Anzisha Prize competition. She was revealed as the winner with EdTech entrepreneur Matina Razafimahefa (Madagascar) and Mohamed Bah (Sierra Leone) on Tuesday, 27 October, during the programme’s virtual awards ceremony. Matina Razafimahefa and Mohammed Bah came as first and second runners-up respectively.
Moatamed received the top cash prize of USD$25,000 (roughly UGX93.4 million) while Razafinahefa and Bah received USD$15,000 (roughly UGX56 million) and USD$12,500 (roughly UGX46.7 million) respectively that will help boost their business.
With a pool of thousands of talented and innovative young entrepreneurs from more than 30 African countries having applied for the 2020 Anzisha Prize — the premier award for Africa’s youngest entrepreneurs, only 20 finalists were selected as finalists from an impressive initial pool of more than 1,000 shortlisted entrepreneurs that saw Moatamed emerge as the overall winner. Notably, in the 20 finalists where two Ugandan entrepreneurs Jonathan Paul Katumba, 22, Founder of Minute5 and Also Hamidu Biha, 22, Founder of Biha Eco Venture.
Each of the 20 finalists who made it through the rigorous selection process received USD$2,500 and the opportunity to join a fellowship of 122 entrepreneurs who receive venture building support and mentorship.
Moatamed Co-founded Presto, an automated delivery system that connects vendors with customers and suppliers. The platform provides a crowd-sourced network of delivery agents for small businesses. Presto has been successful since it launched in 2019 and serves 300 stores and merchants in two cities.
“Across upper Egypt, I saw people suffering from the problem we are solving and I wanted to try my best to help them, especially small businesses owned by women. I want to expand my service across Africa to help women who are suffering from operational hassles.” says Moatamed.
The first runner-up, Razafimahefa is the Founder of Sayna, an innovative EdTech venture. Her business sources, trains, and produces highly equipped young Africans in industry-specific digital skills. Since its inception, the venture has expanded its training to Comoros, Ivory Coast, Benin, and Senegal. To date, Sayna has placed 80% of its students in the global IT marketplace.
Second runner-up, Bah is the Founder of Information for All (IFA), a venture that constructs drills and repairs water wells and toilets, which ensures water sustainability and hygiene for water deprived communities. To date, the IFA team has drilled over 20 wells and provided clean water to thousands of people.
“The young people who have participated in the Anzisha Prize over the last decade remind us that betting on Africa’s young people is a recipe for success. Now more than ever, we need their entrepreneurial spirit,” said Reeta Roy, President and CEO of Mastercard Foundation.
The Anzisha Prize is a partnership between African Leadership Academy and the Mastercard Foundation. Since 2011, Anzisha Fellows have created over 2,000 jobs – 56% of which have been for young Africans under 25.
Applications for the 11th edition of the the Anzisha Prize open on February 15th 2021. To nominate young entrepreneurs, visit anzisha.org/nominate.