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AfricArena announces speaker lineup ahead of 2020 Summit

AfricArena, an African startup ecosystem accelerator has announced the lineup of speakers for AfricArena Summit 2020 and AfricArena Air taking place on from 23-26 November 2020, during which over $300,000 of prize money will be allocated, and unveils its new AfricArena Knowledge and Deal focused Wired platform, enabling African tech founders and investors from across the world to share and connect.

Braving strong economic headwinds and managing current health environment to maximize safety, AfricArena will this year hold an in-person Summit at Workshop17 in Cape Town; with measures in place to ensure health and safety compliance.

Over 50 startups from 18 tech hubs across the continent are travelling to Cape Town to take part in the event. The announced speakers include:
  • Aurélien Lechevallier, the French Ambassador-Designate to the Republic of South Africa.
  • Cedric O, Secretary of State for the Digital Sector of France
  • Robert Paddock, co-founder of GetSmarter; founder and CEO of Valenture Institute
  • Anna Collard, content strategy and evangelist at KnowBe4 Africa; winner of the ISACA South Africa Chapter 2020 President's Award.
  • John Sanei, futurist and author of FutureNext, FORESight and What’s your moonshot
  • Siby Diabira, head of Southern Africa & Indian Ocean for Proparco
  • Zach George, an early-stage investor and partner at Launch Ventures.

Panel speakers include, Grace Legodi (Plug n’ Play), Vuyisa Qabaka (HYBR), Clive Butkow (Kalon Ventures), Jim Chu (The Nest), Greg McFarlane (Edge Growth), Alex Onukwue (TechCabal), Matsi Modise (SimodiSa), Keet Van Zyl (Knife Capital), Justin Norman (The Flip), Irene Ochem (AWIEF), Catherine Young (Thinkroom and Grindstone Accelerator), Dr Summarie Marie Roodt (Silicon Cape), Alison Collier (Endeavor South Africa), Thierry Barbaut (La Guilde), Tim Harris (Wesgro), Ben Marrel (Breega Capital), Westley Diphoko (Fast Company South Africa) and many more.

AfricArena Air


In addition, this year the hybrid event will include an AfricArena Air track, available online between 23-26 November, featuring the following keynote speakers:
  • Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, co-founder of Andela, Flutterwave and co-founder and MD at Future Africa.
  • Lelemba Phiri, partner at Africa Trust Group
  • Alexia Alesandropoulou, head of research at AVCA
  • Runa Alam, CEO at Development Partners International

Panelists include Marie-Francoise Marie-Nelly (World Bank), Bosun Tijani (co-founder of CCHub), Cathy Sall (ITC), Ashwin Ravichandran (MEST), Vincent Viollain (Vivatech), Tomi Davies (ABAN), Ganesh Rasagam (World Bank), Isabelle Bébear (BPI France), Lexi Novitske (Acuity Ventures), Andile Maseko (Alphacode), Rajiv Daya (Founders Factory Africa) and Sara Medina (SPI).

Over 50 startups from 18 African tech hubs will be attending a two-day bootcamp program run by FSATLABS ahead of the AfricArena Summit, where they will pitch on various innovations and Seed, Series A and Growth selection tracks to top investors. The selection this year includes Yegomoto (Rwanda), Enova Robotics (Tunisia), Taskmoby (Ethiopia), Kudoti (South Africa), Mobiwater (Kenya), Curacel (Nigeria), Casky (Morocco).

AfricArena is also announcing the launch of its new AfricArena Wired platform where the African Tech Startup world connects and shares knowledge. This curated community and knowledge base connects African tech founders, investors, partners, mentors and ecosystem players.

AfricArena Wired enables:
  • access to live events (including Africarena Air)
  • video on demand of ecosystem events
  • podcasts
  • ecosystem news
  • a dealroom section containing: financing resources, VC and deal database (curated by Daryn Munnik), a CoffeeChat service enabling to connect to any of the curated 200+ members of the Wired Community (mostly founders and investors).

Christophe Viarnaud, founder and CEO of AfricArena and Methys, commented, “Braving strong economic headwinds and adverse environment, we are very fortunate to have been able to put together such a high-quality hybrid event, with possibly our strongest headlining of speakers ever, and a very rich selection of startups. We are very grateful to our anchor partners for this. 2020 is the year of accelerated digitalisation and we, therefore, therefore could not be more excited about our new contribution to the African ecosystems with AfricArena Wired. The platform is in effect a powerful technology addition to AfricArena DNA around Founders and Investors content, knowledge repository, impact events and deal flow platform, now all available from your mobile phone. We hope this will unlock further value to the ecosystem at large”.

For more, go to https://www.africarena.com.
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