Last month (18th to 22nd March 2019), we hosted the Edtech Entrepreneurship Bootcamp alongside Injini and National Technology Business Centre (NTBC) with selected twelve (12) startups. The weeklong programme was geared towards startups that are interested in solving problems in the educational sector using technology.
During the 5 day programme, the participants polished their EdTech ideas and learned from a panel of experts and stakeholders from the education and technology sectors. On the Tuesday night, we hosted a well-attended event on ‘Building and Scaling an EdTech Company’ with 3 panelists: Dr. Doreen Nabaho from Injini-Africa, Davison Kapakyulu from iSchool Zambia and Lumbiwe Lumbikani, an expert on Education, Technology and Teacher Development. On the Wednesday, the participants also got to hear founder stories from 2 of BongoHive’s alumni – Njavwa Mutambo from Musanga Logistics and Chisepo Chirwa from ZPOS.
The nine (9) startups that made final pitches were: iDrone; Luzora; EduPay; E-Skulu; AgriComm; Smart Box; Nchito Dot Zed; Smart Zed and Tutor Tavern. The judging panel was made up of Lumbiwe Limbikani, Muchu Kaingu of Circuit Business and Mark Mondoka of Venivi.
The top three finalists were:
3rd place: EduPay – a school fees credit payment solution, receiving a prize of ZMK 5,000;
2nd place: Tutor Tavern -offering a matchmaking service for tutors and masters students, receiving a prize of ZMK 10,000;
1st place: Agricomm – providing agricultural extension education using digital channels, receiving a prize of ZMK 15,000 and automatic entry to pitch for a slot in the final Injini-Africa incubation programme based in South Africa.
Daliso Chitundu, co-founder of Agricomm and 1st place winner, expressed that the programme had provided a learning experience because it was a space with a unique group of people in one room all dedicated to solve Zambia’s problems through Edtech. On winning the competition and what it meant for Agricomm he said “The opportunity is to get into Injini is wonderful and the team looks forward to connecting with Africas’ brightest minds in the Edtech space.”
Simunza Muyangana, Director of Entrepreneurship had this to say about the programme: “The falling costs of internet prices over the last 3 years in Zambia affords educators and entrepreneurs an opportunity to consider if the 4th sustainable development that spurs us on to make quality education and lifelong learning accessible for all can be realised with the use of technology. We’ve been privileged this week to work alongside Dr. Doreen Nabaho, a specialist from Injini – Africa’s first Ed-Tech Incubation program, to support entrepreneurs with innovative ideas through the process of validating their ideas and developing plans for them. Another delightful highlight was getting to connect with them and other firmly established players in the Ed-Tech space during an Ed-Tech community meet-up.”
The weeklong program was a successful but intense one for the participants and we would like to congratulate them all for the hard work that they applied in developing their ideas during the week.