Seed Stars World Gaborone 2016, Thoughts and Debrief04 Nov 2016
Me and my partner were luckly to have been selected for the hotly contested competiton with 9 other finalists, selected out of the best startups in Botswana.
Seedstars is a Swedish group which runs global startup competitions across the world spanning more than 65 emerging and developing markets. The annual Gaborone pitch event was organized in collaboration with Stabic Bank, Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) and the support of partners including Microsoft.
The competition was hotly contested with 25 finalists, selected out of 152 e-agriculture startups from across Africa and the Caribbean. Before the announcement of winners, finalists benefited from a training bootcamp on 22nd November at iHub Nairobi, focused on issues related to offering successful business services in e-agriculture; they were also coached on how to pitch effectively. On 23rd November, they presented their services publicly before judges and an audience composed of agriculture and ICT experts and institutions including venture capitals. The panel of judges consisted of; McKenzie Slaughter from Prohaus VC (USA), Niraj Varia from Novastar Ventures (East Africa), Herve Pillaud (Agreenstartup and Chambre d’agriculture de Vendée, France); Jermaine Henry (Devlabs, venture capital firm, Americas), Ralph von Kaufmann (Hakika Ltd, UK), Peris Bosire (FarmDrive, start up, Kenya).
At the end of it all, four startups were selected as official winners: three in the early stage category and one in the advanced stage category.