Pitch AgriHack 2016 SemiFinalists Announced

Agriculture, challenges

October 18, 2016

The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation ACP-EU (CTA), in collaboration with the African Development Bank (AfDB) and with the support of partners including the Centre for Agricultural Bioscience International (CABI), mLab East Africa, ProHaus Group and Devlabs, launched the first edition of Pitch AgriHack, a new component of its AgriHack Talent Programme, in September 2016. Its ultimate objective is: to help develop business services offered by young e-agriculture start-ups as well as contribute to the acceleration of the adoption of innovations for stronger productivity by the agrifood sector in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries. Pitch AgriHack will:

  • provide a business training boot camp
  • create a platform for pitching service offered before partners and potential investors
  • facilitate grants, investments and additional incubation/acceleration opportunities.


The competition was launched in two categories: early stage platform and advanced platform. Applications were received from 152 Startups based in 29 ACP countries. A panel of 16 judges (from incubators and development partners) analysed the entries on criteria such as the: technical eligibility of the service offered; overall quality of descriptions; quality of the pitch summary, Agricultural problem addressed by the platform, Unique value proposition, Team composition and added value, Current market traction, and proposed Solution. Their results culminated in the shortlisting of 52 semi finalists.

The semifinalists are (in no particular order):

  • Quantum Analytics (Kenya)
  • Kitovu Technology Company (Nigeria)
  • Freshmarte LTD (Nigeria)
  • Farmers Pride (Kenya)
  • MOBFiT Ltd (Uganda)
  • (Nigeria)
  • Agroswap (Ghana)
  • Sugar Town Wish List (St. Kitts and Nevis)
  • Kuza (Kenya)
  • Agroplexi (Nigeria)
  • JustAgri Nigeria)
  • Agronomy plus (Kenya)
  • LocationForms (Nigeria)
  • Lumegz Co Nig Limited (Nigeria)
  • FarmIT (Kenya)
  • Agromarketplace Nigeria Limited (Nigeria)
  • Q-Data & Mapping Services (Kenya)
  • Dahrah Global Limited (Nigeria)
  • Ghalani Limited (Ghana)
  • NaFarm Foods (Nigeria)
  • Woculus&Afrimash Investments Limited (Nigeria)
  • Badili Innovations (Kenya)
  • WhyFarm (Trinidad and Tobago)
  • Mastersource International trade Ltd (Nigeria)
  • FarmAfriQu (Nigeria)
  • Seya Online Food Shop (Nigeria)
  • Fogofolu Limited (Nigeria)
  • NelionFarm (Kenya)
  • City digital consults (Nigeria)
  • Loop Media and Solutions (Nigeria)
  • Farmbook (Nigeria)
  • CowTribe Africa (Ghana)
  • Brastorne enterprises (Botswana)
  • ASBL Kouady (Côte d’Ivoire)
  • Nardy Green Planet (Togo)
  • AgriLead Social Business (Burkina Faso)
  • Jangolo Farm (Cameroun)
  • Modeling Agri Systems (e-MAS) (Bnin)
  • ICT4DEV (Côte d’Ivoire)
  • NG MEDIAS (Bnin)
  • CLIN SARLU (Togo)
  • AGRISS (Burkina Faso)
  • Startup Lizi (Togo)
  • Sooreul (Sngal)

The semi-finalists will be further screened by a panel of judges that includes venture capitalists. Following this second stage of screening, 25 startups – out of the 52 above – will be selected to go to the final stage of the competition. These finalists will be invited to the Pitch AgriHack pitching session in Nairobi, Kenya from 22 – 24 November, 2016 and will have the opportunity to attend training sessions, pitch their solutions to development partners and investors.

Ultimately, at least 4 best startups will be selected as winners. Winning teams will receive a cash prize of up to €15,000, as well as promotional support, additional capacity building and networking opportunities. They may also benefit from investments from supporters of Pitch AgriHack.

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25 Exceptional Startups to Compete in PIVOT East 2016 Competition

PIVOT East 2016

October 17, 2016

25 exceptional startups from across the region will compete to win market recognition and investor interest during the PIVOT East pitching competition and conference. The startups were unveiled today after an intense evaluation process by a panel involving over 10 investors. The 25 finalists, 5 from each category were selected from the 50 semifinalists announced two weeks ago

The startups that have made it to the finals are;

  • Finance category; EdgePoint Company Ltd and Andrea Consulting (Tanzania), BusinessTYC (Ethiopia),  (Uganda) and Inclusion Media (Kenya)
  • Enterprise category; Mobiticket, Travo, Kleva Plus and e-Kodi (Kenya) and Ajira (Tanzania)
  • Entertainment category; Request Africa Limited, Dream Africa, Cloud 9 Kenya and Covercloud Ltd (Kenya) and Tamithi Ltd (Uganda)
  • Utilities category; Tech Water Solutions, myhr, Mobilized Construction and weSurf (Kenya) and Aloyo Electronics (Uganda)
  • Social Impact category; MobFit and SkoolDesk (Uganda), Flare and Medulla Shelf (Kenya) and Techno Stuffs Ltd (Rwanda).  Here is the full list of the finalists with a brief description of their product.

Out of the 25 startups that made it to the finalists, 15 are from Kenya. 5 of the startups are from Uganda and 3 from Tanzania. Ethiopia and Rwanda are represented in the list by one startup each. This year’s edition of PIVOT East promises to be hotly contested with countries like Uganda, Tanzania and Ethiopia having strong startups in the finalists.

For each category a 6th best startup has been placed in a waiting list and may pitch at the conference if a finalist in the category  drops out for any reason.  Startups in the waiting list are; Rogech Animation & Visual Effects and Simon Tito Foods from Tanzania and MyAfya, and ForeverAppy Ltd (Vivi) from Kenya

Finalists of the competition will receive training, coaching and mentorship in the weeks to come before the pitching conference. These pre-conference  activities  assist  the  finalists  to  improve  key  elements  of  their  business  models  and  the  positioning  of  their startups  to the  rich audience at the  conference. Startups in the waiting list will also benefit from the training, coaching and mentoring given to the finalists.

PIVOT East competition aims to facilitate discovery and nurturing of the next wave of high potential innovations into sustainable business,  ensuring that digital innovations are high in the agenda of regional, governments, corporates and development agencies for amplified development impact and to raise the quality of startups in the region.

PIVOT East is much more than just a pitching competition – it is a holistic platform for startup organizational development and business model refinement . The competition has seen startups from across the region that made it to the finals grow their businesses in terms of  revenue growth and access to funding among other enterprise growth indicators.

PIVOT East 2016 statistics – Infographics

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PIVOT East 2016 Semi-finalists Announced

PIVOT East 2016

October 3, 2016

PIVOT East, a startups competition and conference geared towards raising the quality of startups in the region and improving their investability, has unveiled semifinalist for this year’s competition. The semifinalists totaling 50 will be competing to be in the list of 25 exceptional startups set to fight it out for market recognition and investor interest during the finals conference on 15th November.

The competition opened the call for applications in August 2016 with startups from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Sudan and Somalia applying through the Venture Capital (VC4Africa) platform.

To reach the best startups in the region, the PIVOT East team worked closely with hubs across the region to ensure that the best entrepreneurs in the region take part in PIVOT East. The competition attracted over 120 applications from Across the region. Compared to the previous editions, this year the competition received many applications from countries like  Rwanda and Ethiopia. The competition also attracted applications from Somalia, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo. We also received applications from non-East African  countries e.g Nigeria, South Africa, Ghana, Lesotho, Tunisia and Gabon.

13 thought leaders were drawn from across the region to review the PIVOT East 2016 submissions. This culminated in the top 10 startups in five categories being determined. The panel consisted of; Emrys Schoemaker – Research and Strategist at Caribou, John Kieti – Consultant at the World Bank , Richard Magu – ICT Projects Manager at Software Group ,Stephen Deng -Strategy & Innovation Manager at Caribou Digital , Jacqueline Dismas – Fabrication Laboratory Manager at Buni Hub , Kimathi Ikiao – Investment Associate at Accion Venture Lab, Kishor Nagula – Director at Caribou , Josiah Mugambi – COO at iHub, James Odede – Director at LakeHub, musa Kamata – Manager at Buni Hub, Marissa Drouillard – Senior Director at Caribou, Keziah Njeri – Angels Interactions at Viktoria Solutions and Craig Perue – Research Fellow & Senior Consultant at Mona School of Business & Management, UWI

The criteria used by the judges helped to evaluate the startups’ purported customer pain, opportunity and customer segments, the solution and its fit to the problem, the revenue model, and analysis of the competitive landscape. Other selection criteria items helped to evaluate the calibre of the team and the startups’ focus to grow into sustainable enterprises. These included the team composition and commitment, current market traction, and projections for milestones and key metrics.

We would like to thank all the judges who took time out of their busy schedule to evaluate the startups. Now without further ado, HERE are the semifinalists of PIVOT East 2016. Congratulations to all the semifinalist and All the best in the next stage.

About PIVOT East

PIVOT East is East Africa’s premier startups pitching competition and conference held annually since 2011. It is organised by m:lab East Africa an initiative of the iHub. The competition is comprised of a series of activities that culminate in the finalists conference that will he held on 15th November in Nairobi, Kenya.

About 125 mobile startups from across East Africa have participated as finalists of past PIVOT East editions. And 20% of them have cumulatively raised over $20 million in funding after their participation in the competition.

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Apply – Founder Stock Agreements Training


August 23, 2016

Early last month, iHub partnered with uWakili an online legal services platform to provide specific pro bono legal services to the iHub and m:lab startups. uWakili is an online legal services platform that provides Kenyan businesses and individuals access to cost-effective and easy-to-use online legal services

The partnership entails virtual legal consultation office hours for startups and entrepreneurs in the community and a monthly in-depth training for startups and entrepreneurs on a broad range of issues. The training will be held monthly for the next four month. The first training was held last month. The training was on Legal Structure and compliance.

We will host the next training on 29th August from 5 pm – 7 pm at the iHub. The training will be on Founder Stock Agreements. The training will be facilitated by John Reyes Freeman.

About John Reyes

John Reyes Freeman is a US and Hong Kong licensed attorney versed in corporate and securities law. John is also knowledgeable in startups, having been a founder and C-level staff for over 10 startups. John was the General Counsel for a new media and technology Incubator and Private Equity fund’s Asia Pacific office for over 3 years. After leaving the PE world, John turned to mentoring startups on legal compliance and investment issues. After winning a hackathon in April, John took over as Co-Founder and COO of Agriledger, a charity helping small farmers worldwide.

Details of the training

Topics to be covered

  1. Founder Stock Agreements, touching particularly on the following:
  1. How to allocate stock between founders and early employees
  2. Vesting provisions:- periods and unvested stock
  3. Co-sale provision
  4. Right of first refusal
  5. Founder Departures

When: Monday 29th August from 5.00 PM to 7.00 PM

Where: iHub – Ngong Road, Nairobi
RSVP HERE to attend

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Investors: Discover East Africa’s Deal Pipeline at PIVOT East 2016

PIVOT East 2016

August 22, 2016

PIVOT East, East Africa’s premier mobile startups pitching competition and conference will be held on 15th November 2016 in Nairobi, Kenya. One of the objectives that the event aims to achieve each year is “to raise the quality of mobile startups in the region and to improve their investability”. The 2016 edition is being organized to allow investor’s input upfront at the pitching event.

We have involved investors as judges in the selection of the finalists in previous editions. Some of the Investor funds involved in finalist selection were Savannah Fund, Kuramo Capital Management LLC, Novastar Ventures, and TLcom Capital LLP. Other venture capital funds involved were Gray Ghost Ventures, ACCION’s venture labs, the Invested Development, Kaizen Venture Partners,Inventure Management Ltd,Investec Asset Management among others.

We are inviting investors to contribute to the quality of startups and their investability hence an enhanced deal pipeline in 2016 and beyond, by participating in this year’s event as a virtual judge to select the finalists of the competition, a judge during the conference and or as an attendee. Ideal investors for PIVOT East Startups are those who are active and involved in helping to build companies in Africa. Early stage, Angel Investors and patient investors able to pursue deals in East Africa  are particularly encouraged to take part.

You may join in for the benefits below :-

  1. Deal pipeline access through key information on top 25 startups, from this year and any other PIVOT alumni.
  2. Potential of being in the panel that determines the 5 Awardees from the 25 finalists in the 5 category
  3. Investor feedback at preliminary selection stages to inform training, coaching and mentorship program for finalists before the pitching conference.
  4. Special seat at the pitching conference to interrogate startups as they pitch.
  5. Assistance to meet startups of interest at the finalists conference.
  6. Notification of deals closing following PIVOT East interactions to be shared to m:lab East Africa for our own statistics (we will not disclose personal details).
  7. Institutional investors participating under this framework to be listed in the PIVOT East website

If you are interested to participate in PIVOT East 2016 as an investor, kindly apply HERE. For more information feel free to get in touch with Sheilah Birgen – m:lab East Africa Lead via email or Egra Ombati at

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