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"A view of Africa and Africans with a focus on entrepreneurship, innovation, technology, practical remedies and other self sustaining activities.".....Emeka OkaforEmeka Okaforhttp://www.blogger.com/profile/13573984373251779325noreply@blogger.comBlogger7039125blogspot/cNFJohttps://feedburner.google.com

Tshidiso Radinne founder of Raphta on Reimagining the Possibilities of AI

Sat, 03/28/2020 - 11:01am
From Analytics Insight:
Raphta views itself as building the “artificial intelligence infrastructure” to enable new intelligent applications, devices, and workloads. The company does this by offering three core deep learning platforms, Shuri AI which is a cloud edge facial recognition platform, Metsi a geospatial imagery analytics platform for the water utility industry and Tau, a voice and speech analytics platform. Raphta’s platforms are for the developer community and innovation teams within large enterprises...[more]

#DRC - based startup Kintrack's Real-Time GPS Tracking System

Sat, 03/28/2020 - 10:48am
Kintrack offers:
GPS tracking which allows you to control the driving behavior of drivers by keeping an eye on their movement in real time on a map. Instant control perimeter alerts arrive directly in the manager's phone...[more]

Five Nigerian startups got into Y Combinator's 2020 winter batch via @dadabenblog

Sat, 03/28/2020 - 10:33am
From Benjamin Dada:
Eleven years ago, the first Nigerian company got into Y Combinator—an American seed accelerator. The Nigerian company was the defunct online advertising platform, PetaSales.

Later in 2016, Paystack and Flutterwave—leading payment platforms in Nigeria—joined the accelerator programme. Since then, Nigerian startups have become staple Africa representatives at Y Combinator (YC), participating in its last four batches.

Out of the 197 startups in the 2020 winter batch, 12 are African startups and five of the 12 are Nigerian startups, namely: Bamboo, CrowdForce, Eze, SEND Shipping, and Termii...[more]

Synthetic Biology Study Guide from @sirajraval

Sat, 03/28/2020 - 10:30am
From Siraj Raval:

Apply to Onebio Venture Studio - An African Biotech Incubator

Sat, 03/28/2020 - 9:40am
From Onebio:
It is our mission to build businesses that are original and world-changing. We partner with biotech entrepreneurs, providing investment capital and know-how to venture build the companies of the future...[more]

Startup Opportunities...Eastern Congo has the world’s largest quinine plantations #DRC

Sat, 03/28/2020 - 9:06am
From the Economist:
Near the edge of a plantation is one of just five quinine-extracting factories in the world. The operation, which has been running since 1961, produces about 100 tonnes of processed quinine a year, or about 30% of global demand. “First we address the country’s needs, then we export the rest,” says Etienne Erny, the managing director of Pharmakina, the firm that owns the factory.

Just under half the quinine is sent abroad. A third of this is turned into tonic water and the rest into medicine. It is a tragic twist of fate, therefore, that despite the abundance of quinine in Congo, it still has the second-highest rate of malaria deaths in the world. In 2017 some 435,000 people died from the disease. Many cannot afford to pay the $2 for a course of 21 pills or do not diagnose the malady in time...[more]

Ideate, collaborate, and co-build is the mantra for Lagos-based startup studio, CeedCap @CeedCap

Thu, 03/19/2020 - 6:27am
A profile of CeedCap in techpoint::Over the years, models for startup growth and acceleration have matured. New entities have unfolded to guide and nurture seedling companies, developing them from conception through to launch and sometimes, exit. It is common knowledge that these models include angel investors, incubators, accelerators, and venture capitalists (VCs), among others...[more]

Dakar Houses by Marc Thorpe designed for Moroso M'Afrique makers

Tue, 03/17/2020 - 1:56pm
From Dezeen:
New York architect Marc Thorpe has developed a prototype house made from earth bricks, to house the makers of Moroso's M'Afrique furniture collection.

The Dakar Houses are planned for a site on the outskirts of the capital of Senegal.

For more than 10 years, Italian furniture brand Moroso has been promoting the craft skills of the Dakar region through its M'Afrique furniture collection...[more]

From the OpenPlant toolkit | Systematic tools for reprogramming plant gene expression in a simple model

Mon, 03/16/2020 - 11:45am
From ACS publications:

We present the OpenPlant toolkit, a set of interlinked resources and techniques to develop Marchantia as testbed for bioengineering in plants. Marchantia is a liverwort, a simple plant with an open form of development that allows direct visualization of gene expression and dynamics of cellular growth in living tissues. We describe new techniques for simple and efficient axenic propagation and maintenance of Marchantia lines with no requirement for glasshouse facilities. Marchantia plants spontaneously produce clonal propagules within a few weeks of regeneration, and lines can be amplified million-fold in a single generation by induction of the sexual phase of growth, crossing and harvesting of progeny spores. The plant has a simple morphology and genome with reduced gene redundancy, and the dominant phase of its life cycle is haploid, making genetic analysis easier. We have built improved Loop assembly vector systems for nuclear and chloroplast transformation and genome editing. These have provided the basis for building and testing a modular library of standardized DNA elements with highly desirable properties. We have screened transcriptomic data to identify a range of candidate genes, extracted putative promoter sequences, and tested them in vivo to identify new constitutive promoter elements. The resources have been combined into a toolkit for plant bioengineering that is accessible for laboratories without access to traditional facilities for plant biology research. The toolkit is being made available under the terms of the OpenMTA and will facilitate the establishment of common standards and the use of this simple plant as testbed for synthetic biology.More here

African Organic Agriculture Training Manual - Aquaculture

Sun, 03/15/2020 - 6:03pm
via Organic Africa: African Organic Agriculture Training Manual - Aquaculture Consumption of fish per capita in sub-Saharan Africa has lagged behind that of the rest of the world, partly due to the low supply of fish products. However, aquaculture, especially fish culture (farming), is increasing. Commercial finfish culture in fresh or brackish water is now common, with Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Zimbabwe, Kenya and South Africa being the leading producers. Marine shrimp culture is concentrated in Madagascar, although a few farms are found in Seychelles, Mozambique and Kenya. Aquaculture is estimated to be 95 percent smallscale, characterized by one or more small ponds of 100 to 500 m2 in size, with fish ponds integrated into the rest of the agricultural activities. Aquaculture is the production of all forms of aquatic animals such as fish and crustaceans or aquatic plants such as algae in fresh, brackish or salt water. In freshwater, mainly fish and some species of freshwater-prawns are raised. Although fish can also be raised by fencing-off or using net-cages in a swamp or a lake, the most efficient way to grow most fish is in a domesticated pond system. In this chapter, we will, therefore, discuss production practices based on this system.

Gardening in Sacks Handbook | A technique of vertical agriculture

Sun, 03/15/2020 - 5:47pm
The Gardening in Sacks Handbook:
This handbook is part of the culmination of SI Technical and Programme Quality Department’s will to capitalise on its experience of sack-gardening in different countries. The first projects of this kind implemented in Kenya have proved successful, giving SOLIDARITES INTERNATIONAL a solid reputation on the domain. The NGO has since developed this sack-gardening project in 6 countries of intervention: Haiti, Thailand, Sudan, Myanmar, Cameroon and Somalia. This handbook thus aims at formalising these 8 years of experience, proposing a structured overview of the whole project cycle, from the assessment to the design and then the implementation of the sack-gardening activities. It identifies the different steps to follow and provides practical tools to best develop an implement the project...[more]

African "universities should also be commercialising IP through the creation of spin-off companies or by licensing it to businesses" Andrew Bailey, University of Cape Town

Sun, 03/15/2020 - 3:18pm
From Venture Burn:
Universities need to be creating new intellectual property (IP), as well as protect and mature it to facilitate industry adoption, says Dr Andrew Bailey senior manager of the University of Cape Town’s technology transfer office (TTO), Research Contracts and Innovation (RC&I).

Bailey (pictured above) adds that the role off academic institutions in Africa’s tech ecosystem shouldn’t stop there, he says universities should also be commercialising IP through the creation of spin-off companies or by licensing it to businesses.

And that’s what RC&I has been doing. “Currently we have 24 spin-off companies since 2004 (21 remain active) and have equity worth over an estimated R100-million in some of them. We have 125 active technologies in our portfolio and have received around R36-million in revenue since 2001 from successful commercialisation,” says Bailey...[more]

“The Real Homes of Africa” by Aliyah Mahdi via @TravelNoire

Sun, 03/15/2020 - 12:01pm
From TravelNoire:

There’s a new web docuseries that aims to show people the glamorous side of West Africa.

Entrepreneur Aliyah Mahdi is the host of “The Real Homes of Africa” where, instead of showcasing what people may be used to seeing on television, she will guide viewers through some of the most stunning homes in Senegal.

Mahdi is the co-founder of Made In Africa, an organization that helps to build local businesses and improve local and international commercial trade between the diaspora. Partnering with her husband, she founded the organization in 2014 after repatriating from the United States to Senegal...[more]

Anzisha Prize Program - Developing Entrepreneurship Into a Career via @anzishaprize

Fri, 03/13/2020 - 5:43am
From All Africa:
The Anzisha Prize Program, a partnership between the African Leadership Academy and the Mastercard Foundation wants to "fundamentally and significantly" increase the number of very young job generative entrepreneurs in Africa. In Cape Town, they held the first of five Very Young Entrepreneur Education & Acceleration Summits planned for African cities, where investors, policy makers and entrepreneurs discuss opportunities and challenges in investing in very young entrepreneurs...[more]

Ethiopia’s China-Inspired Agro-Processing Strategy

Fri, 03/13/2020 - 4:30am
From the China-Africa project:
In August 2019 Melange Coffee Roasters, a family-owned Ethiopian coffee processing company inaugurated a new plant in Addis Ababa. With an investment of 1.37 million USD, the plant immediately began exporting processed, powdered packages of Ethiopia’s world-renowned coffee to China and South Africa.

Speaking to the Ethiopian Monitor, the country’s Investment Commission Promotion Director, Aschalew Tadesse, called the new development a “role model” for other firms. Coffee is Ethiopia’s most important export, and the government is keen that more and more of it is processed at home before being sent to markets across the globe.

And it’s not just coffee: by designating agro-processing as one of 10 “strategic sectors”, and promoting the construction of multiple agro-industrial parks, the Ethiopian government is trying to ensure that more of Ethiopia’s myriad agricultural exports – from pulses to cattle products – are processed domestically into secondary products first, rather than exported in their raw forms...[more]

Samira Soomal Dairy - Somalia's Dairy Queen: Cheese factory helps Mogadishu economy recover

Fri, 03/13/2020 - 2:46am
From TRT World:
Last year, Somalia's first cheesemaker Samira Soomal Dairy has opened its doors in the capital Mogadishu. The small business is facing several challenges, but as Adesewa Josh reports, demand is not one them

Africa's Floriculture is One of its Most Lucrative Industries

Thu, 03/12/2020 - 4:39pm
From Africa.comAfrica’s floriculture industry is one of the continent’s most lucrative industries. Kenya is the biggest exporter of flowers from the continent, followed by Ethiopia and South Africa.

In Kenya, the floriculture industry generates over $1 billion annually, which is approximately 1.1% contribution to the national GDP. The floriculture industry in Ethiopia contributes 80% to the country’s national GDP, and its workforce is comprised of 85% women. In South Africa, agriculture remains one of the backbone industries of the country by contributing 0.4% to the national GDP and its floriculture industry is ripe with the rapidly growing wedding industry...[more]

Beyond the return: 28-year-old African American relocates to Ghana; starts food truck business

Tue, 03/10/2020 - 7:32am
From ABC News Ghana28-year-old Deijha Gordon has left her family in Brooklyn, New York to start a food truck business (based in basecamp Accra) Ghana.

The decision to come to Ghana for the first time and subsequently decide to relocate to the West African country is borne out of a sense of duty to help, Deijha tells ABC News...[more]

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