The Cape Town-based AfricArena event, to be held in partnership with Wesgro and Silicon Cape, will be hosting a “World Tour” in May to select startups to pitch at the event in November.
Startups pitched at the inaugural AfricArena event in Cape Town last year, and organisers have confirmed it will return for a second edition in November. Last year’s event saw more than 80 startups presenting to over 100 investors with 25 countries being represented.
Kicking off their 2018 journey in May, the AfricArena team will visit six of the fastest growing African tech cities – Mauritius, Reunion Island, Nairobi, Casablanca, Lagos and Dakar.
“On the back of a highly successful first edition of AfricArena with over $2m in deal impact and much more in commitments, we have decided to double down on our investment and exponentially increase our impact,” said Christophe Viarnaud, founder of AfricArena and chief executive officer (CEO) of international digital firm Methys.
“This year AfricArena will be expanding its pan-African footprint to find the best startups of the continent. We will also be taking some of the winners of the AfricArena 2017 challenges on an investor roadshow in Paris and New York. With a fully open collaboration model bringing an increasing number of sponsors and ecosystem partners, AfricArena is committed to its mission to accelerating the African Tech ecosystems,” said Methys.
Key themes for this year’s conference are smart city, smart agri, smart commerce, smart skills, smart media, and smart travel. Startups from all over the continent will be pitted against each other in front of global investors and sponsors.
“Cape Town is the startup capital of Africa, accounting for more than 60% of all startups in South Africa alone. Conferences such as AfricArena help make our ecosystem even stronger, by connecting the best and the brightest from across Africa. We are excited to be a part of this innovation, and we look forward to a successful “world tour” and conference later this year,” said Tim Harris, Wesgro CEO.