Innovation Stories From Around The Globe

AngelHack-ing Around The World: Africa

Feb 19, 2015 2:46:35 PM / by casecase

If you ask most people what they think of when you say “tech startup”, chances are they might say something about the Bay Area. Most would. But we know and have witnessed that the talent is not limited to the Bay Area. Not at all. That’s why we have spread our Series to 50 cities around the world.

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One of the most exciting regions we’re bringing into our community this year is Africa. The tech startup scene in the continent is blowing up, and AngelHack is touching down soon to be a part of it. For the first time ever, our Global Hackathon Series is hitting multiple cities on the continent to discover the talents and ideas the region has to offer.

Abuja, Beira, and Kampala; we’re coming for you!

One reason why we’re so pumped for the African cities in our series is the quiet (at least around the rest of the world) but hugely impactful innovation coming from the continent. We’ve read about awesome ideas, like a startup in Kampala that started an Uber-like motorcycle sharing service, and SnapScan, a mobile payment app that has created a huge buzz in the South African market.

What’s been adding more to our excitement, is the opportunity we have to work with an incredible team of ambassadors, who are just as dedicated to advancing and involving the tech community in Africa as we are (seriously, these guys are amazing). Jibril Lawal, our Abuja ambassador couldn’t contain his excitement about the tech scene in Nigeria:

“In Nigeria it is huge. We have new apps everyday. Easy Taxi helps you quickly find a taxi near you. Crisis and disaster reporting apps are popping up. There are apps to help farmers in rural areas test their soil. You see more kids looking to learn more and more about technology every day.”

But despite the excitement, It’s obviously not all rainbows and roses. Infrastructure in the region is still relatively weak, with spotty internet connection being a huge frustration to hackers and tech users, according to Jibril. Anyone who has spent hours working away at projects on a computer knows that a lack of internet can cause some real problems. (dang it, stop buffering!).

The tech boom is also still relatively new to the region, so developers are still generally small in numbers and young in their expertise. But these guys are amazing. With the passion they’re showing, we KNOW we’re gonna be hearing a lot more about African tech hubs in the next year. We sure as heck can’t wait to showcase the talent we see at our hackathons this year!

Daniel Nanghaka, our ambassador in Kampala, Uganda, thinks that the HACKcelerator will be especially impactful to the young talent that exists in the nation. Winners from each of our hackathons will be taking part in this global pre-accelerator program, giving these hackers the opportunity to connect and work with like-minded awesome people from across the globe.

“After the hackathon has ended, we sometimes have startups emerging and doing their own thing. Others usually don’t make it to the market. I think AngelHack will provide the local support we need, to get these startups on the market. This is why AngelHack is different from the rest.”

It’s an epicly exciting time, and AngelHack can’t wait to be a part of it.

If you happen to be in Africa and want to connect with other AngelHackers around you, head here! Our ambassadors are awesome and waiting to welcome you in with open arms.

 

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Written by casecase