11 African startups have won $100,000 each at the latest Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology’s (MEST) Africa incubator programme for 2019. 

The incubator programme was used to mark the graduation ceremony of the latest cohort of startups that participated in over a decade length of MEST’s existence. 

13 startups participated in the pitch event but only 11 were successful as they retained the hosting rights to launch 30 MEST-portfolio companies. This investment becomes the largest single round it has made in one cohort till date. 

The teams include those from Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa. 

Ghana ranks first with the highest number of startups which include: 

  • a digital savings platform, BezoMoney 
  • a female-focused healthcare service aggregator, Massira 
  • big data platform, Adi+Bolga; and  
  • a merchant-lender financing platform, Niqao. 

Ghana is followed by Nigeria with startups which include:   

  • beauty platform, Zuri; 
  • studio booking service, CoVibes; and
  • real-estate crowdfunding platform, Cofundie. 

Kenya startups also benefitted from the incubator with three startups consisting of: 

  • a Mobile money ticketing startup, Saada 
  • a healthcare service, Nadia; and  
  • a farm produce distribution platform, Farmula. 
South Africa is the fourth with only one startup (Kweza) to benefit from the fundraiser.

The prize money: The 11 companies won $100,000 each in investment from MEST which will culminate into $1.1 million, making them a part of the 60 early-stage software companies, in the industries ranging from e-commerce to agritech, fintech, healthtech, and AI-supported by MEST. 

Nairametrics report stated that MEST had invested the sum of $22 million dollars in its incubators till date with more follow-on-funds to come. 

About MEST: Launched in 2008, MEST is a Pan-African training programme, seed fund, incubator and hub for technology entrepreneurs in Africa, providing critical skills training in software development, business and communications, as well as seed funding and incubation. Headquartered in Accra, Ghana, with a presence in Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa and Cote d’Ivoire, MEST is funded by the Meltwater Foundation, the non-profit arm of Meltwater, a global leader in media intelligence and Outside Insight.