Author: Kanyali Muthui

Kanyali Cynthia is a Kenyan-based financial journalist with key specialisation in data and tech reporting and over eight years of experience.

  • There is a huge need for business owners, policymakers, and African leaders, in general, to capitalise on the investment in more research, higher education and science
  • Academic institutions need to build skills and knowledge of young professionals in areas of research, innovation, science and technology in order to benefit from the natural resources and improve the livelihoods of East Africans
  • Africa has the strongest growing scientific production currently at 38.6 per cent since the start of 2012 with the number of authors subsequently growing at a slightly higher rate of 43 per cent over the same period

The Academic Public-Private Partnership Forum (APPPF) has called for more funding to be availed to Africa’s researchers and innovators. This will largely drive up the continent’s sustainable economic development.

According to data by statista.com, despite Africa comprising 12.5 per cent of the global population, the continent still only accounts for less than 1

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  • The firm’s CEO Olugbenga Agboola has now come forward to address claims levelled against him in an email to employees
  • This is the first time the CEO has spoken in regards to the claims reported by West Africa Weekly, a Substack newsletter written by journalist David Hundeyin
  • The report highlighted several allegations against the startup and Agboola including fraud and perjury to insider trading as well as sexual harassment

Over the past two weeks, Nigerian fintech startup Flutterwave has been under fire after the firm’s Chief Executive Officer was accused of allegedly committing fraud, perjury to insider trading and sexual harassment.

The firm’s CEO Olugbenga Agboola has now come forward to address these claims levelled against him. 

In an email to employees, Agboola termed the allegations as false, condemning the impact these claims had had on the firm. 

“I’m writing today because I want you to know how concerned I

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  • Africa’s fashion and textile industry is the second-largest sector after agriculture with an estimated market value of US$31 billion
  • The use of tech in fashion has been brought to a much broader scale including the use of apps and the creation of smart textiles
  • As the majority of Africans were forced to stay home, there emerged countless online clothing stores, most of which were using social media (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter) as marketing tools

Like many other sectors across the continent, the fashion industry is also taking to embracing technology to improve operations.

Africa’s fashion and textile industry is the second-largest sector after agriculture with an estimated market value of US$31 billion in 2020 and growing annually.

While combining tech with fashion may seem farfetched, technology has always been an essential factor in the production of clothes and the different styles in fashion since the beginning of time.

It is …

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  • Social commerce may seem like a more foreign concept but it is widely used across Africa
  • Online shopping has gained more popularity during the Covid-19 crisis, turning social networking platforms like Facebook and Instagram into business tools
  • Social commerce- which is abbreviated as s-commerce- represents the integration of shopping and social media

 

When the Covid-19 pandemic hit back in 2019, a majority of individuals were forced to turn to social media platforms in search of goods and services. 

While most people view this as the growth of e-commerce across the globe, it also gave rise to the growth of social commerce. 

Social commerce may seem like a more foreign concept but it is widely used across Africa. 

Online shopping has gained more popularity during the Covid-19 crisis, turning social networking platforms like Facebook and Instagram into business tools. 

Social commerce- which is abbreviated as s-commerce- represents the integration of

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  • A report by the African Development Bank notes that today, at least a quarter of the continent’s population has internet access, a nearly fifty-fold increase in internet usage since the turn of the millennium.
  • Mobile technologies alone have already generated 1.7 million jobs and contributed US$144 billion to the continent’s economy, or roughly 8.5 percent of GDP
  • Accelerating digitalization, artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing, robotics, and 3D printing – have obvious and important implications for education, employment, and the future of work

 

Leaders on the African continent must work harder to harness emerging technology to boost government performance, transparency, and inclusivity as the continent recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic.

They also need to ensure that the growing technological advancements across the continent are not used as a tool of repression, division, and conflict.

According to a study by the World Health Organization, 13 percent of all new or modified

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Digital disinformation is becoming an increasingly common feature of Africa’s political landscape.

Africa’s technological space has grown exponentially over the past decade, largely driven by the increased access to mobile devices and internet.

The number of mobile phone users in Africa, 650 million, outnumbers the population of the United States or Europe.

How Africans are using mobile phones

Mobile phone use has increased exponentially as more people in African countries own a cell phone than clean water, a bank account or power.

Communication, radio listening, money transfers, online purchasing, and social media networking are all done via mobile phones in Africa. Many of the disparities between urban and rural areas, as well as the wealthiest and poorest, have been reduced or eliminated.

Similarly, internet prices are coming down while speeds are going up.

With high internet speeds, it is easy for anyone looking, or even sometimes not looking to stumble

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  • A sense of well-being encompasses a wide range of factors, including access to education and employment, as well as the lack of armed combat or threats
  • Digitization has provided a cheap, secure source of finance to populations in need and improved government transparency in countries where graft and corruption are a huge concern.
  • Technological change has also resulted in increased productivity which has in turn improved African’s standards of living

 

When we think about the quality of life, the first thing that comes to mind is the degree to which an individual is healthy, comfortable, and able to participate in or enjoy life events.

A sense of well-being encompasses a wide range of factors, including access to education and employment, as well as the lack of armed combat or threats.

It is also relative, subjective and has intangible components, such as spiritual beliefs and a sense of belonging.

Rapid

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“Sokowatch started as this kind of backend brand. We wanted a brand that could be more front and centre for the African retailer and easily pronounced across all markets while reflecting our East African roots. So that’s why we’ve rebranded now to Wasoko, meaning ‘people of the market,” Yu said.

The seven-year-old company said this round of funding will go towards exploring expansion into Nigeria as well as Southern Africa while consolidating its position across its six current markets.

It will also make hires and expand its product offerings to point-of-sale merchant systems, bill payments and social commerce, verticals it might build in-house or back and acquire companies that provide such services.

The company also offers a buy now, pay later option for retailers who need working capital to order more goods. Buy now, pay later offerings are the latest trend for B2B retail and e-commerce companies. They see it …

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World Bank further notes that the unified digitisation of the East African economy is estimated to generate up to a US$2.6 billion boost in GDP and 4.5 million new jobs that will largely benefit those at the bottom of the pyramid.

Data by GSMA reveals that by the end of 2020, 495 million people subscribed to mobile services in Sub-Saharan Africa, representing 46 percent of the region’s population, an increase of almost 20 million on 2019.

GSMA revealed that smartphone connections will more than double by 2025 in Sub-Saharan Africa with the East African Community registering the largest incremental growth, led by Rwanda and Tanzania. …

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A report by The Women in Tech Africa Summit 2019 showed that despite receiving 50 per cent less venture capital funding, global technology firms led by female entrepreneurs typically achieve a 35 per cent higher return on investment than those managed by men.

In the first half of 2021, African startups raised US$1.19 billion. However, female CEOs raised just 14 per cent of the financing, up from 2 per cent for the same period in 2020.

The African Development Bank puts the funding gap for women entrepreneurs in Africa at US$42 billion.

This should encourage more investors to take a gamble on women-led businesses in Africa’s tech space as they offer promising returns. 

Women in tech on the continent not only drive significant development in the African tech space, but they also simultaneously inspire young girls venturing into tech across the continent to do the same. …

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