The online campaign phase for the SME Empowerment Challenge East and West Africa has officially started. This Challenge was developed by HiiL Innovating Justice, together with the Global Agenda Council on Justice and the Ford Foundation, as part of the upcoming Innovating Justice Boostcamp in Lagos on 28 October and the 6th Annual Innovating Justice Forum on 3-4 December. Voting for this year’s shortlist of innovations is open until 17 September at www.innovatingjustice.com.
The SME Empowerment Challenge is geared towards finding and strengthening new initiatives that can empower startups and SMEs – specifically, innovations that address regulatory hurdles and bureaucratic red tape faced by youth-led startups in East and West Africa. 21 innovations from across East and West Africa have been shortlisted with representatives coming from Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Ethiopia and Ghana.
From Kenya, the innovations include the Bits platform which is aimed at combating discrimination by providing a collaborative coding platform where software developers are hired based on contribution rather than other characteristics (such as gender, race or ethnicity). Meanwhile, in neighboring Uganda, the mSME Garage provides a support centre with free legal …read more