Startups & Ideas

15 Startups to join Women In Tech KES 22 Million Programme

Standard Chartered in partnership with @iBizAfrica from Strathmore University has launched the seventh cohort of its Women in Tech programme. This initiative aims to empower 15 female-led startups by providing them with crucial resources and support to scale their technology-driven businesses. This year, the program focuses heavily on sustainability and alignment with Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) practices, reflecting a growing trend towards responsible and impactful business operations.

The Women in Tech initiative is designed as a 12-week incubation programme where selected startups undergo rigorous training and mentorship. This year, out of numerous applicants, 15 promising startups were chosen based on their innovative use of technology to address key social and economic challenges in Kenya. At the culmination of the program, seven of these startups will each receive KES 1.2 million to facilitate further growth of their ventures.

Since its inception, the programme has been a beacon of support for women in tech, having attracted over 2,250 applications and trained 64 startups. A total of KES 40 million in seed funding has been disbursed to 32 women-led enterprises over the past cohorts, signifying the programme’s substantial impact on the tech landscape.

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Startups selected for 2024 Women in Tech 7th Cohort:

The selected startups for the 2024 cohort showcase a broad spectrum of sectors, each integrating advanced technologies to create scalable and sustainable solutions:

  1. Girah Heritage Ltd – A sustainable tourism company based in Nairobi, Kenya, providing unique cultural travel experiences for budget travelers. 
  2. MOMA Renewable Energy A producer of liquid renewable fuels. Our flagship product is an ethanol-based cooking fuel, derived from food waste and byproducts. 
  3. Voda Water – A for-profit social enterprise headquartered in Kenya dedicated to improving global health 
  4. Zidallie – Is a leading provider of comprehensive transport solutions that ensures safe and efficient transportation for students.
  5. Investa Farm is revolutionizing agricultural financing through blockchain and AI technologies, connecting farmers with cryptocurrency lenders worldwide. 
  6. Gwiji for Women – They are a tech social enterprise that empowers marginalized and underprivileged women from slum communities who work as casual cleaners.
  7. Meira Education Solutions – They are an EdTech Solutions provider. In addition to building a comprehensive school search portal, we work with other technology software and hardware companies to introduce the right tech tools to learning institutions in Kenya.
  8. Zaoshinani is a Fintech driving agricultural transformation using technology and data to steer financial inclusion among smallholder farmers in rural Kenya.
  9. Kavalian Limited A Kenyan clean-tech company on a mission to revolutionize waste management and empower communities through innovative waste management solutions.
  10. Smart Reja is a data-driven platform that provides tools for retailers to optimize inventory, make data-driven decisions, and increase sales. 
  11. AerialGIS, is a web application that seamlessly fuses subdivision maps with interactive mapping and VR technology to virtually transport property seekers to the property location on the map. 
  12. PsychCare Clinic is a level 2 facility offering mental healthcare services and is regulated by the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board.
  13. Jido is an on-demand delivery management app designed to simplify package deliveries through goods consolidation and using route optimization technology.
  14. Africa Stem Girl was founded in May 2020 at the height of COVID-19 as African Tech Girl to expose individuals aged 7 – 17 to coding skills.
  15.  Hayah Cradle To Bloom – This startup is a data-driven platform that provides tools for retailers to optimize inventory, make data-driven decisions, and increase sales.

Training and Mentorship: Core Components of Success

The business incubation training is meticulously designed around emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things (IoT), and big data. The curriculum not only focuses on these modern tools but also integrates fundamental business skills including idea conceptualisation, strategy formulation, and marketing. These elements are crucial for transitioning the startups from the incubation phase to becoming sustainable ventures.

The Women in Tech Incubator Programme is staunchly “digital by design,” emphasizing the use of technology to foster business growth. This approach is aligned with the global movement towards digital transformation and ensures that these startups are well-prepared to thrive in a competitive, tech-driven marketplace.

Joyce Kibe, Head of Corporate Affairs, Brand and Marketing at Standard Chartered, Kenya and Africa, remarked on the programme’s role in leveraging Kenya’s advanced technological landscape to address global challenges, particularly in climate action.

The Women in Tech programme by Standard Chartered and @iBizAfrica from Strathmore University not only nurtures female-led startups but also contributes significantly to the socio-economic landscape by integrating sustainable practices with technological innovation. Through such initiatives, Kenya is set to remain at the forefront of the global tech industry, empowering women and driving sustainable development.

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