May 4, 2021 – The five startup finalists of the Seedstars World Competition 2020/21 have finally been announced. For Africa, Ladda from Nigeria will be advancing to the final round along with startups from four other regions: Fulfillment Bridge (Tunisia), Pegasi (Venezuela), IMAN (Uzbekistan), and Finology (Malaysia).
In partnership with The Next Web, Seedstars is airing the Grand Finale online on May 20, 2021, 2PM CEST. The remaining participants are set to battle it out in the last leg of the competition to compete for the Grand Prize of $500K in equity funding.
Register here to watch the Seedstars World Competition Grand Finale: https://seedsta.rs/3mXLE3r.
“These five startups have proven that no matter how difficult times may get, innovation is still at the forefront. We can’t wait to see them at the Grand Finale,” says Daria Khlopova, Seedstars World lead of Seedstars.
Shifting to a fully-virtual global pitch competition
In 2013, the Seedstars World Competition was launched to find the most promising early-stage startups and build the largest entrepreneurial community in emerging markets.
The first startup competition in 13 countries was a massive success and gained attention on a global scale. It showed to the world the untapped potential of developing economies, innovative solutions and talented entrepreneurs willing to transform their communities. This led to larger tours, reaching over 90 countries, for the following six years, bringing together thousands of entrepreneurs, mentors, investors and experts. Today, Seedstars World is the largest startup competition in emerging markets.
However, in 2020, things took a turn when the pandemic arose. Reimagining its world tour online, Seedstars has digitally traveled across the globe reaching more countries than before. Today, Seedstars has concluded the regional stage of the competition with only five startups remaining in the running for the Grand Prize of $500,000 in investment.
Narrowing down over 5,000 startup applicants to 5 finalists
The application period brought over 4,000 applicants from all over the globe where only 94 startups were chosen to participate in the local stage of the competition. These local winners were then put to the test as they participated in Seedstars’ Investment Readiness Program, a modernized and personalized program helping startups get investment ready. Check out the 94 local winners here.
From the local stage, only 20 startups advanced to the regional finals where the final five startups have been selected to participate in the last stage of the competition for a chance to win the Grand Prize of $500,000 in equity investment.
Nigerian startup Ladda is part of the the final five
The startup finalist that will be representing Africa in the Grand Finale is Ladda from Nigeria.
Ladda addresses the problem of poor financial literacy and insufficient ease of access to micro investment opportunities for low to medium income earners. Ladda provides access to investment for retail investors in order to democratize access to investment and provide financial literacy.
Ladda will be joined by four other startup finalists from MENA, LATAM, CEE, and Asia:
Fulfillment Bridge (MENA | Tunisia) – A cloud based global e-commerce logistics platform offering warehousing in 4 continents, fulfillment, shipping, return management and more. Fulfillment Bridge offers a global fulfillment network in 14 countries powered by AI to help online sellers optimize logistics and manage exceptions.
Pegasi (LATAM | Venezuela) – 70% of Latin America’s healthcare information is still on paper, causing complications to 1 in 10 regional hospitalized patients. This startup aims to solve that problem by creating a low-cost EHR that works online and offline, anonymizes data and allows big data monitoring of epidemic diseases. Pegasi makes healthcare information accessible, clear and useful for patients, physicians and service providers in the developing world.
IMAN (CEE | Uzbekistan) – Banking penetration rate remains at less than 7% in Uzbekistan due to lack of Islamic products, high cost of capital, and poor UX. IMAN brings in a Shariah-compliant PoS solution that allows customers to buy anything they want from retailers, funded by P2P investors
Finology (Asia | Malaysia) – In this day and age, getting a financial product should be a seamless experience. Except, it really isn’t. Finology solves this by enabling seamless access to financial products via the use of our technology & ready digital distribution channels.
What’s in store for the Grand Finale?
In partnership with The Next Web, the Grand Finale will be broadcasted on May 20, 2021, featuring sessions such as insights presentations, an update on Seedstars’ investments, and a panel discussion with experts on tech and education.
In addition to the Grand Prize of $500K USD funding, the competition will also award prizes to the best startups from different categories: EdTech courtesy of HEG Fribourg, ICT Accessibility by MADA, Women Empowerment, Climate Change, and Childhood Development.
The most anticipated event will be the pitching competition where each of the finalists will take their turn to present their startup to the panel of judges. The jury will then do a breakdown of the decision before the Grand Winner for the Seedstars World Competition 2020/21 will be announced.
The Seedstars World Competition 2020/21 was made possible with VAUD and the support of the School of Management Fribourg (HEG-FR), Presence Switzerland as well as the Qatar Assistive Technology Center (MADA), who staunch supporters and believers in the power of innovation and entrepreneurship.
To join in the Grand Finale broadcast, you may register here: https://seedsta.rs/3mXLE3r.