440NG recently announced acceptance of 9 startups into its accelerator programme. These 9 startups were chosen after careful consideration and deliberation over a period of time and these startups in addition to funding, get to enjoy benefits like a working space at the Lagos Garage, monthly stipend and also world-class advice from world class mentors.
One of the two startups focused on education, Young Soul helps schools without an in-house training capacity to teach Computer Studies in secondary schools. According to a federal policy, in a bid to encourage computer literacy, all secondary schools in Nigeria must teach Computer Studies to its student irrespective of what class.
Sadly, this might not be possible in all schools due to various reasons, but “Young Soul” and its team of 8 hope they can solve this problem by introducing an electronic learning module that runs on a computer without the need of a physical teacher. I do think they need to develop an online presence as I could find anything on them so as to inform people about what they are doing.
Jara Mall is an e-commerce start-up that wants to make groceries and other house items easy to buy and shop. Founded by Kunle Jinadu, a Covenant University Alumni who also founded Asoebi.com, an ecommerce website that allows you to shop for traditional apparels, Jara Mall has been around for a year and operating low key. Word around suggests that the start-up has got up to $250,000 in funding, but whether this funding would help to scale is uncertain although Supermart.ng had better watch out.
Jayosbie.com, an e-commerce start-up that focuses on the fashion needs of the young and social, was co-founded by Juwon Osobu, the same guy that founded 1500naira.com before it got acquired.
Prayer Box is an online prayer box. Literally. The start-up, founded in 2011, allows its users to post prayer points online and also drop testimonies and also collect tithes and offerings. With the way religion is in Nigeria, I really don’t understand Prayer Box’s proposition. We are in times when people gather to pray in thousands and tens of thousands and people traveling to other countries just to see ministers physically and get prayed for. I don’t know really, but what’s that saying again? “What an adult sees sitting down, a child cannot see standing up”.
Ella Matthew is one of the four e-commerce start-ups and its an e-commerce website for women exclusively. Sorry, guys. Founded by Lola Olushola, Ella Matthew offers what other generalist e-commerce websites don’t offer, an exclusive offering of fashion, and all other needs for a woman.
Taja or Taja Plus is a startup that helps sellers manage their inventory and get notified when a stock is low, generate sales reports and users can also manage multiple stores. Tajaplus is available as Windows app or Android app, and is free for download but users get a 30-day trial to allow users take inventory of all their products and set stock notifications. Users can also use the platform to accept payments for goods or services with cash or credit card.
Click Right Consult
Click Right Consult is an I.T and consulting firm that specializes in Web Apps, software development and consultancy services. One of their products is jamb-cbt.com, an online and offline service that allows students to get past questions and study materials for the JAMB examination. The catch seems to be the ability to take JAMB Computer Based Test with no need for Internet access.
It’s simple. You buy fuel online and collect in one of their designated filling stations. According to their website, Fuel Voucher allows you to buy fuel online and collect anywhere. I should note that ‘anywhere’ only includes some parts in Lagos (Ikeja, Ikoyi and V.I) and one filling station in Rivers. I guess with funding, they will be available in other areas and expand.
A niche ecommerce store that deals exclusively with gadgets and electronics and also allows online swapping and trading of electronics and gadgets. The service has been around for some time now and with more money, they stand a chance of gaining more traction.
China has officially reopened its embassy in Somalia and accredited a new ambassador to the horn of Africa country recovering from years of conflict.
China, like other nations, closed its embassy and relocated its staff after the breakout of civil war in Somalia in 1991 when the country descended into a chaos and lawlessness that lasted during the next 23 years.
Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud and Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Ming announced the official reopening of the embassy in a ceremony in the capital Mogadishu on Sunday, Xinhua reported. The president hailed Somali-Chinese relations as historic and strong, saying that China has played a positive role in Somalia during its time of need.
The Chinese vice foreign minister said reopening of the new embassy will further strengthen the two countries’ bilateral relations.
The bottom line: By measuring previously ignored economic activity, rebasing may expand the GDP of some African countries 25 percent.
On Sept. 30, Kenya announced the results of its “rebasing”—a recalculation of its gross domestic product to include previously unaccounted-for economic activity. Its GDP expanded 25.3 percent, to $55.2 billion, moving it up several rungs on the list of Africa’s largest economies, to 9th. The government adjusted its 2013 growth rate from 4.7 percent to 5.7 percent.
Kenya’s is the latest in a series of rebasings that have reinforced investors’ perception of the area’s growth potential. Even as Ebola ravages West Africa and as the Democratic Republic of Congo is still recovering from a devastating civil war, many of the other economies in the region remain dynamic:
The International Monetary Fund predicts sub-Saharan growth will be 5.8 percent next year, up from an estimated 5.1 percent for 2014. Many of the area’s governments issue bonds that look like good bets based on that projected growth.
Ed’s note: Worth a read - despite all the bad news, economies steadily marching forward.