The Global Startup Awards (GSA) in partnership with the Global Innovation Initiative Group (GIIG) has announced its return to the African continent for the 2023 edition of the African Startup Awards.
Now in its second year, GSA Africa is a continent-wide opportunity for SDG-aligned solutions with global relevance, focusing on agriculture, climate, commerce, education, healthcare, and mobility & logistics, among others, with particular interest in startups championing Web3 technologies, sustainable business models, green innovation, and diversity in the workplace. The year-long competition will see entrants compete at a national level before vying for their spot as a regional finalist. Thereafter, the continent’s top innovators will gather in-person at the GSA Africa Summit in August 2023, for a two-day conference and gala dinner to convene, connect and celebrate Africa’s most innovative minds.
Jo Griffiths, Co-Founder of GSA Africa, says that: “Historically, Africa has had to battle against this narrative of the ‘Dark Continent’ – but if we learnt anything from last year’s competition, which gathered more than 7,000 entries – it’s that Africa is a continent brimming with world-class talent, with impact-driven ideas, and with ample opportunities to scale. We’re incredibly excited to spend this next season connecting with the next cohort of leaders in African innovation, and to support their growth with new opportunities for funding, access to market, and mentorship at a global level.”
With categories for startups, investors, ecosystem enablers and individuals, winners of the African Startup Awards will also gain exclusive access to the GSA Alumni Network – an invite-only club to fast-track startup outcomes and connect members with regional and global stakeholders, as well as matchmaking opportunities between active investors, successful startups, accelerator and incubator programs, and like-minded government initiatives.
Kim Balle, Co-Founder of GSA Global, notes that: “In addition to these investment, networking and mentorship opportunities, startup winners of the African awards will also be invited to attend the Global Grand Finale taking place in Copenhagen, Denmark, in March 2023. Here, Africa’s top innovators will have the chance to engage with a range of potential partners from innovation ecosystems from across the globe.”
The second edition of the African Startup Awards comes as the continent becomes home to more than 1,000 active startups, which together raised more than US$ 1 billion in venture capital in 2021.
Applications for the 2023 season of GSA Africa will be open from 4 November 2022 to 31 January 2023, with entrepreneurs, startups and innovation organisations at all stages of the growth cycle invited to apply.