Google launches initiative for African SMEs. 2 other things and a trivia | Ripples Nigeria
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Google launches initiative for African SMEs. 2 other things and a trivia

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This line-up of stories will help you discover the latest happenings around the tech world, today.

1. Google launches initiative to support African SMEs

American tech-giant Google has launched a new initiative aimed at supporting the growth and recovery of SMEs in Africa.

Titled International Small Business Month, the initiative is expected to assist and position African SMEs to gain strong hold within their respective industries.

According to Mojolaoluwa Aderemi-Makinde, Google’s head of brand and reputation for Africa, the programmes are tech-driven and will enable SMEs in Africa to expand their customer base.

He said: “As more consumers start their journey looking for products and services online, we want to do more to help retail small businesses digitise and better leverage online tools for growth.

“One thing we know for sure is that when small businesses recover, African economies rebound and do well and this benefits everyone.

“This portal is all about supporting businesses as they get online. In a competitive business environment, digital technology helps to drive economic growth and job creation, while delivering valuable services to people in Africa.”

READ ALSO: Google lifts ban on cryptocurrency adverts

Tech Trivia: Which of these inventions was invented by a dentist?

A. Electric car
B. Electric chair
C. Electric bicycle
D. Electric bulb

Answer: See end of post.

2. Ugandan startup Emata emerges winner in CATAPULT bootcamp

Emata, a Ugandan fintech startup, has been named winner of the Best Catapulter Award at the end of the CATAPULT: Inclusion Africa 2021 digital bootcamp.

The startup, which provides farmers with access to digital financial products, secured the grand prize money and networking opportunities.

Recall that Ripples Nigeria reported last month that 12 African fintech startups had been selected to take part in the third edition of CATAPULT: Inclusion Africa Bootcamp.

With a vision to improve on the status quo, the programme targeted companies focused on financial inclusion in Africa, with an aim to build bridges between Africa and Europe, highlighting their initiatives and very much aligned with the sustainability goals of Luxembourg’s finance centre.

Before the final announcement, fourteen startups in total took part, where 12 of those are from Africa.

Emata simplifies the day-to-day operations of a cooperative, and offers affordable loans to farmers who are members of cooperatives.

The win landed the startup a EUR5,000 (US$6,000) in prize money and free entry and accommodation to attend African MicroFinance Week in October 2021.

3. Kibanda TopUp raises $460k pre-seed round

Seeking to digitise food supply chain for restaurants, Kenyan startup Kibanda TopUp, has raised US$460,000 in pre-seed funding to increase the size of its customer base.

Founded to digitise the supply chain for micro, small and medium restaurants in Africa, the startup was launched in the month of February, 2021.

According to local media, co-founder Njavwa Mutambo is the former chief executive officer (CEO) of Musanga Logistics, while Emilie Blauwhoff is a former management consultant.

Kibanda TopUp allows restaurant owners to order inventory such as grains, beverages, poultry, and beef via app or SMS and receive their orders the next day.

Speaking on the vision of the startup, Mutambo explained that the COVID-19 pandemic was a major inspiration.

He said: “The COVID-19 pandemic outbreak in Africa was a stark reminder of how fragile Africa’s food supply chains are. With half of the African population eating from largely informal restaurants daily, strengthening restaurants’ supply chains is a matter of food security.

We are on a mission to increase restaurants’ contribution to African GDP. This means enabling restaurants with the stock and financial services they need to serve Africa’s growing population.”

Tech Trivia Answer: Electric chair

A dentist named Alfred Southwick invented the electric chair.

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