This Week in African Tech 🌍

Safaricom under fire after protest outage πŸ‡°πŸ‡ͺ

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Tech Roundup

  • The Kenyan government will not proceed with the Finance Bill after protests brought thousands of young Kenyans to the streets. President William Ruto refused to sign the bill into law, returning it to the parliament to be amended or abandoned.

  • Safaricom is under fire after giving dodgy explanations for the two-hour service outage during the Kenya protests. The telco initially claimed it was due to damaged underground cables, but that was untrue. The CEO has publicly apologised, but the public is furious, with some customers selling their shares in the company.

    Safaricom CEO, Peter Ndegwa

  • Mama Money, a South African cross-border payments startup, has teamed up with Access Bank and Paymentology, a global card issuer, to launch a virtual bank card that works through WhatsApp.

  • SA fintech startup, Ukheshe, has changed its name to EFT Corporation a few months after acquiring a payments company with the same name. Ukheshe’s CEO, Clayton Howard, said they rebranded to put all their products together with EFTs under one name.

  • Bamboo, a Nigerian fintech helping Africans invest in global stock markets, has launched in South Africa. The startup acquired a financial services provider license and is now live in three countries - Nigeria, Ghana and South Africa.

  • Wakanow Group, the Nigerian traveltech startup, has launched new product lines to improve the travel experience for Africans across the continent. The products include Amina, an AI flight-booking assistant, RoomDe, a booking platform for hotels, shortlets, and beach houses and Kalabash, a payment wallet for travellers.

Group CEO,, Bayo Adedeji and CEO, Wakanow Nigeria, Adenike Macaulay.

  • Starlink now lets Kenyan users pay for their internet using M-Pesa and mobile money in their local currency. The company said it had doubled its users in Kenya since it launched last year.

  • Kibo, an EdTech startup that offers online STEM degrees to African students, is shutting down - ending its popular computer science program. The startup has taught over 2,500 students and raised $2 million in funding but has cited a lack of scalable student financing for its shutdown.

Deal Roundup

  • Nigerian fintech startup, Regxta, has bagged $10k in equity-free funding after winning the fourth edition of the Pitch2Win startup competition. The startup offers people and small businesses in rural communities across Africa easy access to banking services.

  • Launch Africa Ventures remains one of Africa’s most active VC firms. It has invested $4.3 million in 16 startups out of its second fund so far. It invested across 11 countries, with three being from South Africa, two from Kenya, and the rest scattered across the continent.

Events and Opportunities

  • Tech Safari is back in Nairobi with another mixer happening on the 11th of July, hosted alongside AWS, Infobip and CloudPlexo. It’s an evening of fun and networking for founders, investors, and the tech curious. Tickets are selling out fast. Grab them here!

  • Chanzo Capital has announced that the eleventh edition of the Angel Fair Africa event will take place in Nairobi in November. Started in 2013, the fair brings selected African entrepreneurs to pitch investors in a live event and has resulted in $100 million worth of investments in African startups to date.

  • The MIT Foundry Fellowship has opened up applications to accomplished entrepreneurs committed to leading the acceleration of innovation in Africa. The fellowship is an eight-month programme, with 10-15 fellows accepted into the cohort each year. The curriculum includes personal leadership seminars, coursework with MIT faculty, and experiential tours of four innovation ecosystems. Nominations are open here.

And that's a wrap for this week!

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