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Friday, Feb 28th

Kenyan data analytics start-up turns heads at Summit

Kenyan data analytics start-up turns heads at Summit

Kenyan data analytics start-up Superfluid Labs has been named winner of the ENGIE Challenge at Africa Tech Summit Kigali, earning the chance to secure a testing phase with the French utility company.

Disrupt Africa reported last month French multinational energy utility company ENGIE was confirmed as Gold Sponsor of Africa Tech Summit Kigali, which took place for the third time this week.

According to a statement from organisers the partnership between ENGIE and Africa Tech Summit Kigali offered credit scoring start-ups with the potential to provide innovative solutions to both existing and future ENGIE customers the chance to pitch on the Africa Startup Summit stage.

ENGIE was looking for credit scoring solutions to provide proper, accurate, efficient and relevant business intelligence to improve and optimise the prospection and acquisition of future customers, financing schemes for its existing and future customers, and scenarios to valorise customer data that aim to design customer profiles and match offers to customer needs.

Five start-ups were selected to pitch in front of a jury panel and live audience at the event, with Superfluid Labs named overall winner by judge's vote.

A data analytics firm, Superfluid delivers proprietary platforms for digital lending, credit scoring module development, business intelligence and consumer scoring platforms powered by data analytics and AI.

The company, which raised funding from GreenTec Capital last year, will now enter into discussions over testing the efficiency and viability of its solution in the relevant environment within the ENGIE Africa business framework over a period of six months.

Based on the results of the testing phase, the solution would be integrated within the ENGIE Africa business portfolio for further co-development. Prospective locations for the testing phase are South Africa, Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Tanzania and Benin.

Should such a pilot not prove feasible, ENGIE will provide the company with US$5,000 in cash funding.

"The company has a good customer orientation. I think that the product and the team as well are quite agile, and may provide a solution that fits with our needs. We are eager to consider a partnership with them," said Carole Henry, head of innovation and digital at ENGIE Africa.

The other four start-ups that took part in the challenge were CARMA, Emata, Pezesha, and Plendify.

Kenya's tech start-up ecosystem

Kenya's tech start-up ecosystem seems to be growing and there are signs of continued evolution, development and innovation from the space.

In July 2019 Nairobi-based B2B agri-tech start-up Taimba secured US$100,000 in funding from US impact investor Gray Matters Capital via GMS coLABS, and will use the investment to strengthen its infrastructure and increase delivery logistics to cater to six new local markets.

Taimba sources agricultural products directly from the rural small-scale farmers and delivers directly to local customers, predominantly informal green grocers.

According to information supplied, the start-up currently has over 2,000 farmers in its portfolio and engages with 15 farmer SACCOs (Savings and Credit Co-operatives) selling produce and 310 customers comprising informal green grocers (85%), restaurants and cafés (10%), and schools and hospitals (5%).

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