On 06/12/2016, a total of 10 of Rwanda’s best seed stage startups will compete to represent the country at the Seedstars Summit and win up to USD 1 million in equity investment.
Seedstars World, the global seed-stage startup competition for emerging markets and fast-growing startup scenes is coming back to Rwanda. With the support of the local host kLabs, Seedstars World will be holding a dynamic pitch event on Dec 6 2016. In line with its mission to place the spotlight on entrepreneurs from emerging markets, Seedstars World is travelling to more than 65 countries this year to identify the best seed-stage entrepreneurs and provide them with an opportunity to win up to USD 1 million and network with investors and mentors from around the world. Its previous participants have raised over USD 61M collectively, providing employment to more than 800 employees worldwide.
The companies selected to pitch at the Seedstars Kigali event need to be less than 2 years old, have raised less than USD 500,000 in funding and have built a minimum viable product, ideally with existing traction. The Seedstars World team is searching for one additional criterion - the startup’s regional and global scalability. With a strong network of international partners such as Inmarsat, INADEM, Standard Bank and Deloitte, Seedstars World is looking for smart startups that solve regional issues and develop profitable products for the global market, to support their regional businesses and growth.
“Seedstars World is a platform connecting investors to the next generation of startup entrepreneurs, pulling the spotlight from Silicon Valley and Western Europe. Rwanda is the success story of our continent. In the past few years only, there has been measurable advancements in integrating technology with the day to day life of Rwandans. We have heard so much about the bustling startup ecosystem in Rwanda and we are now here to witness the reality” explains Selam Kebede, Associate at Seedstars world.
Up to 10 of the best seed stage startups in Rwanda will be invited to pitch for the opportunity to compete at the Seedstars Summit, that annually takes place in Switzerland.
In order to provide local entrepreneurs with this opportunity and aiming to deliver the best possible event, Seedstars World is closely working with kLabs, who is representing the initiative throughout the year. “We are so happy to welcome Seedstars World community/family in the country of thousand hills and million smiles. Host seedstars Africa means a lot to us as Rwanda has been a focal point and home of startups.” says APHRODICE Mutangana, General manager chez at kLab.
The event will take place at the Rwanda Online’s HQ. ”The Seedstars initiative is one that resonates well with what we are trying to create here at Rwanda Online especially with our flagship product (Irembo Platform). Our aim is to deliver, transfigure and expand what we’ve created today alongside the vision of being the catalyst of transformation in Rwanda through technology. This means we must support the techpreneurs, social innovators, and promote the Rwandan knowledge workers of today in order to keep driving this momentum. I believe Seedstars enables for more bright minds to receive the necessary support, growth, and ability to reach their ultimate goals.” Says Clement Uwajeneza, CEO of Rwanda Online.
Further support is provided by Microsoft 4Afrika, Intel,and Omidyar Network . In addition Seedstars World has partnered with TRECC to bring the “Transforming Education Prize” which will award the best startup in the education space from around the world with a prize of over USD 50,000. Along with PayU, Seedstars World is also looking for the best fintech startup, which will be awarded the “FinTech Prize” at the Seedstars Summit.