Ghanaian startup Nokwary has been named total winner of this 12 months’s Ecobank Fintech Problem, securing US$10,000 in prize cash.
The Ecobank Fintech Problem, earlier editions of which had been received by Tanzania’s Nala and Nigeria’s IroFit, was open to submissions from all startups and builders in any of Africa’s 54 nations.
After a aggressive course of, 10 finalists had been finally chosen from a pool of over 600 candidates. Every of those finalists have been inducted into the Ecobank Fintech Fellowship, a one-year programme which can give them the chance to discover alternatives for industrial partnerships with the bank, however three of them walked away with cash prizes after a digital pitch occasion final week.
The general winner was Ghana’s Nokwary, which makes use of synthetic intelligence (AI) to advertise monetary inclusion. The startup’s banking resolution presents a chance for customers to hold out transactions in their very own language utilizing fashionable social media channels like WhatsApp, and secured US$10,000 in prize cash from Ecobank.
Second place and US$7,000 went to South Africa’s Ukheshe, which has developed a card acceptance platform that permits unbanked retailers to just accept and make digital funds, whereas third place and US$5,000 went to a different South African firm – Progress Issue, which gives commerce financing options designed for MSMEs.
Ecobank Group chief govt officer (CEO) Ade Ayeyemi congratulated the winners and welcomed all of the 2020 fellows.
“The quality of the products and pitches we saw in the final this year were amazing. Clearly it is evident that banking in Africa is moving onto a new dimension with these fintechs leading the way. That is why we are so proud to have had them in this year’s competition and are excited to engage further with them over the next year. It is our expectation that we will build a few lasting partnerships which will help improve the lives of Africans all over the continent,” he mentioned.
Nokwary CEO and co-founder Dennis Asamoah Owusu mentioned his group was excited to have been named total winner.
“Our company is rather young and to be recognised like this on such a stage was really exciting as well as a validation for our focus on creating inclusive technology right from the start. It is also very encouraging to note that a major bank like Ecobank places such a premium on inclusion and is willing to back and promote innovative and cutting-edge technologies towards that purpose. We are looking to work together with Ecobank to bring an AI-first digital banking platform over WhatsApp, as well as other innovative solutions to Ecobank’s customers,” he mentioned.