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267

PIVOT East Invitation for Investors and Partners

PIVOT East

March 14, 2019

PIVOT East, is one of the most consistent and open deal pipeline forums for investors in East Africa. For 5 years, the event attracted more than 200 investors from across the world. These investors have gone to find deals, form collaborations with each other, gauge the readiness of the market and investment environment in the region as they look at growing their portfolio. Pivot Alumni received over $200K from iHub and gone to raise $40M from external investors in the past 5 years.

The competition officially opens its application portal for entries on March 12th 2019 and will continue to accept applications until midnight EAT on April 13th 2019. We are inviting investors and partners to join us in the event this year.

The competition has five categories in both software and hardware which are;

  1. Finance – including digital or mobile payments, banking, insurance, cryptocurrencies, e-commerce etc.
  2. Enterprise – including ERP Systems, CRMs, Recruiting platforms, value chain management, marketing, production,  etc.
  3. Entertainment – including gaming, social networking, e-magazines, music, video, photography etc.
  4. Social Impact – including education, agriculture, health, governance, and other social development themes.
  5. Utilities – A catch-all category including applications for enhancing the usability and versatility of technology etc

We are looking for individuals or firms of angel investors, venture capitalists, private equity and banks to participate as judges, panellists or attendees.  If you would like to participate as an investor sign up HERE

In the previous years, Pivot East has received support from more than 30 organizations both financially and in kind. Some of these partners are East African Technology hubs, Law Firms, Technology bloggers, Tech companies, Government and Media. We are looking for Community Partners, Media, Corporate, Accommodation among others. If you would like to be a partner sign up HERE

We have had these companies as sponsors: Samsung, Omidyar Network, NESC, Co-op  Bank, InMobi, Mercy Corps, Kenya ICT Board, Safaricom, Qualcomm, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Nokia, CGAP, Accion, BlackBerry, OLX, Eskimi, Uganda Communications Commission, MTN Uganda, NITA-UG, World Bank( infoDev), Chase Bank, Motorola Solutions , Intel, Facebook, Making All Voices Count, Chase Bank, Homeboyz Entertainment among others.

Here is what you should expect as a partner or Investor:

  • Deal Pipeline for investors:  25 startups will be pitching at the event, this will be an opportunity to find out more about the business model, their company vision and meet some of their team members at the event.
  • Visibility: We will share information about your business on our social media platforms and community. We will also list you as a partner on our website as well as share the same on all communication materials.
  • Networking: Engage with the different stakeholder who will attend the event. They will be angel investors, venture capitalists, corporate executives, senior government officials, Hub Managers, SME enablers, representatives of development organizations and researchers.

We have worked with over 150 startups across East Africa. Some Pivot alumni are Eneza Education, Totohealth, and Mfarm, Kopokopo, Ma3Route, Ma3Racer, Lipisha, SleepOut.com, Hehe Ltd, Ensibuuko, Ubongo Kids to mention a few. Over 3,000 people have attended PIVOT East events across the region. The conference attracts at least 200 participants per event.

Sign up

  • For investor sign up HERE
  • For partnership sign up HERE

PIVOT East is organised by iHub . The competition aims to catalyse the growth of  East Africa startups, so as to amplify and consolidate the gains of East Africa’s entrepreneurship ecosystem.  The key objective for this year’s event is to ensure that we provide maximum opportunities for all stakeholders to engage before, during and after the competition. It is only through this open engagement that we can surface learnings, which will go into ensuring a more robust ecosystem.

For more information visit www.pivoteast.co.ke. Follow: www.facebook.com/pivoteast

Email: [email protected]

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657

How to participate in Pivot East 2019.

PIVOT East

March 12, 2019

 Eligibility, Criteria and Intellectual Property

PIVOT East is a startup competition and conference held annually since 2011. PIVOT East has officially opened the call for applications for its 2019 edition and will continue to accept applications until midnight EAT on 13th April 2019.

Startups from across the region that meet the requirements can start applying for the competition. Startups may join the competition here

Eligibility criteria:

  • Participating startups must be domiciled in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Somalia.
  • Entries to the competition will be considered to be startups as per the universal definition of a “startup”* or a startup company (*as done below)
  • Participants must fill the co-founder’s details, startup profile and startup details. 
  • Participating startups must also indicate details of at least two members of their team in their application profile
  • Companies that reached final 25 lists of previous PIVOT East competition cannot compete with products/services previously submitted for the competition, the judging panel will have the discretion to disqualify entries in breach of this requirement.
  • Competitors selected to the final 25 must have set up a legal entity (business name, limited company etc) for their business by the time the call for application closes. Competitors with legal entities already set up will have an added advantage at all judging stages.
  • Decisions of the judging committees at all competition stages will be final.

How to enter the competition:

Make sure you have a venture profile published on the VC4Africa platform

Startups that meet the eligibility criteria may enter their application into the competition through the following steps:-

  1. Go to VC4Africa platform and set up your startup profile HERE
  2. Curate your Startup profile according to given profile headings: Co-founder’s details, Startup profile and Startup details. 

Applicants are advised to use all components available under the profiles section to best describe their strengths and potential for growth.

What is a startup?

For purposes of PIVOT East competition, the definition that “a startup company or startup is a company or temporary organization designed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model” will apply. The competition will accept treatment of innovative software and hardware solutions fronted by companies that otherwise have other solutions as separate startup entries. This will be on the expectation that the innovative solution entered in the competition can be:

  • New products/services by new startups
  • New products/services by former Pivot East finalist
  • Spin-offs from existing companies with the potential/intention to grow into a separate autonomous company.

Intellectual Property and visibility of Startups’ information:

Information submitted through the PIVOT East competition application process and the associated intellectual property belongs to the startups. The information will be visible to organizers of PIVOT including the judging panels for purposes of identifying the best startups to showcase and support through the competition only.

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144

PIVOT East is Back!

PIVOT East

March 5, 2019

Pivot East, our premier East Africa entrepreneurs program is back for its 6th year!

The PIVOT EAST is a program of targeted entrepreneurial workshops, pitching competition and conference for entrepreneurs leveraging technology to provide products or services to customers,  and business advisory sessions. It culminates in the top 25 East Africa startups pitching to investors and partners at a finalists conference. Apart from developers and entrepreneurs, typical audiences at the event include investors, corporate executives, government officials, Hub Managers, SME enablers, representatives of development organizations and academia. Pivot Alumni received over $200K from iHub and gone to raise $50M from external investors in the past 5 years.

In 2016, Pivot East took a 2-year break. During this time we have refined the program to ensure maximum value for entrepreneurs at all stages of this program and maximum value for investors and partners. We have also increased opportunities from the public, the private sector and other SME enablers to be a part of the program.

During these two years we have worked with our entrepreneurs to refine key elements of their business models and given some of them opportunities in our six-month accelerator, Traction Camp. Entrepreneurs have also had access to our community space, mentorship support and opportunities shared with us from other partners and ecosystem players.

Over the past 2 years, we have researched, refined, asked,  listened and learned a lot from our alumni, partners and the community. We are ready for the next phase of the PIVOT EAST. We are ready to support and provided a much-needed launchpad and platform for East Africa Startups.

“We’re excited to bring back Pivot East having incorporated invaluable learning on content and structure. Moving forward, learning will be a key component of Pivot East to ensure that the program remains relevant, exciting and impactful for the ecosystem” Nekesa Were, iHub Managing Director

We are delighted to announce that we will have PIVOT East in 2019 with the call for applications opening on 11th March 2019 and the startups pitching competition and conference event happening on 27th June, 2019.

This year’s applicants both in the software and hardware space can apply to participate in the competition in these five categories:-

  1. Finance – including digital or mobile payments, banking, insurance, cryptocurrencies, e-commerce etc.
  2. Enterprise – including ERP Systems, CRMs, Recruiting platforms, value chain management, marketing, production,  etc.
  3. Entertainment – including gaming, social networking, e-magazines, music, video, photography etc.
  4. Social Impact – including education, agriculture, health, governance, and other social development themes.
  5. Utilities – A catch-all category including applications for enhancing the usability and versatility of technology etc

In the previous years, Pivot East has received support from more than 30 organizations both in cash and in kind. Some of these sponsors are: Samsung, Omidyar Network, NESC, Co-op  Bank, inMobi, Mercy Corps, Kenya ICT Board, Safaricom, Qualcomm, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Nokia, CGAP, Accion, BlackBerry, OLX, Eskimi, Uganda Communications Commission, MTN Uganda, NITA-UG, World Bank( infoDev), Chase Bank, Motorola Solutions , Intel, Facebook, Making All Voices Count, Chase Bank, Homeboyz Foundation among others

We have worked with over 150 startups across East Africa. Some Pivot alumni are; Eneza Education, Totohealth, Mfarm, Kopokopo, Ma3Route, Ma3Racer, Lipisha, SleepOut.com, Hehe Ltd, Ensibuuko, Ubongo Kids to mention a few. Over 3,000 people have attended PIVOT East events across the region, Including over 120 investors.

For more information email us on [email protected]

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1549

A Glimpse of What Happened at PIVOT East 2015

PIVOT East

August 18, 2015

On 22nd July, PIVOT East, an innovative startups competition geared towards nurturing and supporting entrepreneur in East Africa went down at the Panari Hotel. The competition was hotly contested with the region’s 25 exceptional mobile startups fight it out to win market recognition and investor interest for the fifth consecutive year. Five winners were selected, one from each  category by panels of  judges drawn from among angel investors and representatives from venture capital firms.
Below is footage of  PIVOT East 2015 proceedings courtesy of Nusunusu Production LTD

Startups interested in participating in PIVOT East 2016 are encouraged to start building profiles of their startups on startups.pivoteast.com for initial business model refinement support and guidance. Semi Finalists of PIVOT East 2015 who did not make it to the finals are eligible to apply for the 2016 competition.

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1479

Apply Now To Slush Impact Accelerator

PIVOT East, Workshops

July 24, 2015

Slush is a technology conference for startups and tech talent to meet with top-tier international investors, executives and media. In 2014, Slush brought together over 14.000 attendees and more than 3500 companies for the two-day event, with more than 750 investors. Next Slush will take place in Helsinki on November 11-12th, 2015. One of the key cross-cutting themes of 2015 is “Slush Impact”: program for purpose driven startups that combine scalable business models with positive impact on the environment or society.Together with Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, UNICEF and other partners, including m:Lab East Africa in Kenya, Slush features Impact Accelerator program for thirty world-changing impact entrepreneurs from all over the world.
WHAT IS IMPACT ACCELERATOR?
Impact Accelerator is co-organised with Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, UNICEF and other partners, including m:Lab East Africa. Impact Accelerator will help the next world changing founders to speed up their businesses through skills workshops, networking opportunities, meeting investors and potential partners, as well as through exposure before and
in Slush conference. The program includes pre-event mentoring, local Helsinki boot camp program from 4th to 13th of November, 2015 culminating to Slush, and post-event support.
Slush
WHAT WILL THE IMPACT ACCELERATOR PARTICIPANTS RECEIVE?

    o

  • Participation in the Helsinki boot camp program from the 4th to 13th of November, 2015: air tickets and accommodation covered for the duration of the program*
  • o

  • Conference pass to Slush
  • o

  • Opportunity to be featured in Slush within Slush Impact
  • o

  • Opportunity to attend and to be featured in UNICEF Innovation Summit
  • o

  • Networking and meeting opportunities with impact investors, NGOs, institutions, startups, media and other stakeholders
  • o

  • Skills workshops and capacity building
  • o

  • Industry specific matchmaking sessions

HOW TO APPLY?
Fill in a short application form for the local competition at m:lab. The selected applicants to attend the local competition will be pitching their business in front of a local panel of judges. The judges will shortlist 2-4 candidates, who will then fill in more in-depth application form. The shortlisted candidates will be contacted by the Selection Committee for an interview. The final decision of the selection will be made by the Selection Committee based on the application form and interview.
WHAT IS THE SELECTION CRITERIA?

    o

  • A great team that can convince us that they have the skills and drive to succeed
  • o

  • A business idea that has gained some traction, yet is still in early phase
  • o

  • A business concept that will have a measurable positive impact on people, society, or planet
  • o

  • Business concept must be highly scalable and ideally have a strong technology focus
  • o

  • There are no limitations to in terms of sector or geographical focus.

We are now looking for the next world-changing business ideas that directly addresses global development challenges. Do you have one? Apply now to the program HERE. Entries for this close on 26th July. We are looking for only 30 applicants.

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4482

PIVOT East 2015 Winners Announced

PIVOT East, PIVOT EAST 2015

July 23, 2015

PIVOT East an innovative startup conference geared towards nurturing entrepreneurs in East Africa, unveiled the winners of the 2015 competition. The unveiling was during a cocktail award ceremony at the Panari Hotel on 22nd July. The competition which kicked off early this year was comprised of a series of activities that culminate to the finalists conference on 22nd July.
Now without further ado here are the winners of PIVOT East 2015
Mobile Finance Category
IMG_2723
Shield (Kenya): Uses proprietary technology, leveraging on Mobile Money to offer under banked employees salary advances directly to their phones
Mobile Enterprise Category
IMG_2705
Duma Works (Kenya): Connects growing companies to talent via an SMS-based job matching platform that ensures quality through a screening process
Mobile Entertainment  Category
IMG_2661
Makarao (Kenya): (slang for‘The Police’) a hilarious 2D animation series on YouTube with episodes ranging between 1-2 minutes, tackling social issues.
Mobile Society Category
IMG_2697
Arifu (Kenya): An education market place where the world’s least served people find information they need from organizations they trust on any mobile phone
Mobile Utilities Category
IMG_2686
Safemotos (Rwanda): Uses smartphone sensors to determine whether a moto taxi driver is more or less safe than average then connect customers to safer drivers
The five winners will receive a 12 months free service of up to Kshs 10,000 per month in Angani credits, while all the other finalists will receive a 3 months free service for up to Kshs 5,000 per month in Angani credits.
Congratulations to all the PIVOT East 2015 winners, finalists and semi-finalists!!!
Startups interested in participating in PIVOT East 2016 are encouraged to start building profiles of their startups on startups.pivoteast.com for initial business model refinement support and guidance. Semi Finalists of PIVOT East 2015 who did not make it to the finals are eligible to apply for the 2016 competition.

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1085

Angani Support Entrepreneurs through PIVOT East

Finalist, PIVOT East

July 22, 2015

We are proud to announce that Angani is one of the Sponsors of PIVOT East. PIVOT East, now in its 5th year,  aims to  demonstrate its commitment to amplifying and consolidating the gains of East Africa’s mobile developer and entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Established in 2013, Angani Ltd., is the first Kenyan public cloud computing and solutions provider located in Nairobi, dedicated exclusively to the provision of cloud services to the entire Eastern, Central and Southern African region.
With a current installed capacity and growing, of more than 2,500 Virtual Servers and in excess of 1 PB of storage capacity, in 2 redundant, reliable data centres in Kenya. Angani Ltd., has invested significantly in infrastructure and remains committed to doing so in the foreseeable future.
Angani are consistently at the forefront of supporting and enabling the Youth and SMEs actualize their ideas into income earning ventures. The founders of Angani believe that IT, like electricity and telephony, is a huge business enabler, especially for Mobile Application Developers. To mitigate against the significant costs of servers and other IT infrastructure, Angani seeks to provide a platform  where developers can lease high quality virtual infrastructure that meets international standards at “local” prices.
Under this partnership:

    o

  • Angani will provide, 3 months free service for all finalist and up to Kshs 5,000 per month in Angani credits.
  • o

  • They will also provide 12 months free service for the 5 winners and up to Kshs 10,000 per month in Angani credits for the winner in every category.

_ANGANI_-01Why angani believe the partnership with PIVOT East is important;

    o

  1. They offer East African developers the opportunity to scale their businesses rapidly, as they can increase or decrease capacity as the need arises through their automated provisioning process
  2. o

  3. They offer free local bandwidth and transfer – This provides for significant reduction on the Total Cost of Ownership on their Virtual Servers, as developers need not pay any more for network bandwidth.
  4. o

  5. The Angani cloud is hosted in Kenya. This also means that developers are now able to improve the user experience for their customers with reduced latency, thus leading to significantly improved speeds. To this end, Angani, has invested in a 1 Gbps link on the KIXP link ensuring fast connectivity to all major ISP’s and Telco’s in Kenya
  6. o

  7. Because, they are a local company, they are able to offer both on site as well off site support 24/7, backed up by a comprehensive SLA.
  8. o

  9. Through the strong partnerships they have created with organisations like Microsoft, VMware, Xen, they guarantee you the best of breed technology and reduce the time it takes for developers to get their products to the market.

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Larry Madowo to be the MC Pivot East.

PIVOT East

July 21, 2015

The Pivot East team is glad to announce that the MC for the event this year will be Larry Madowo.Larry is the Online and Technology Editor at NTV Kenya. He looks after the on-air coverage of technology for one of Kenya’s biggest national stations as well as the online presence of the station. He is

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also one of the most popular television anchors with a Friday night show #theTrend and appears on news coverage across NTV. He has reported on business and technology from over 30 countries in 4 continents and has interviewed presidents, global business leaders, innovators and celebrities of every kind.

Larry previously worked for KTN Kenya and CNBC Africa. He has also appeared on such diverse international outlets as the BBC, CNN, Forbes, RTÉ Ireland and ABC Australia. He also writes a Tuesday column in the Daily Nation and hosts a Sunday afternoon show on Nation FM. Larry is active on social media @LarryMadowo on Twitter, facebook.com/LarryMadowo and blogs erratically at larrymadowo.co.ke.

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1736

Pivot East Speed Dating Event

Finalist, PIVOT East, PIVOT EAST 2015

July 19, 2015

m:lab East Africa has since 2011 been organizing Pivot East, a program of targeted educational workshops for mobile entrepreneurs and business advisory sessions that culminates in the top 25 mobile startups in East Africa pitching to investors and partners at a finalists conference.
The format of the event has been in the past, a two day pitching event, of course with the fireside chats and several talks. This year, the format has changed slightly, with one day fully dedicated to pitching and the other a speed dating event with investors, users, partners and the public in general. The pitching event will be on the 22nd July at the Panari Hotel and its attendance is on  invites  or ticket purchased basis. If you would like to purchase a ticket for this, do so HERE.
10401951_802506236435803_3770686065236324287_nThe 23rd July will be a speed dating event at the iHub. This event is Free and Open to the public. The speed dating event is not a romantic event, just in case the name got you wondering. It is a business session where the startups will be pitching to the attendees, with the hope of getting them interested to either use their product, partner with them, invest in them, join their team or generally give them feedback. How will it work? Well, the entrepreneurs will be seated at tables while people with interest in knowing more about their startups rotate. Each entrepreneur and person will have a maximum of 4minutes to introduce themselves, the entrepreneur will pitch their business and receive feedback. A buzzer will ring, prompting the person  to move to the next entrepreneur.
10511321_802506176435809_2504760781036660565_nThis year’s event is designed to facilitate maximum interaction and networking between startup founders, investors and other industry players. The finalist of the competition will have demo pits at the exhibition area where they will showcase their products to the investors and interested delegates, both at the pitching and the speed dating events. You wouldn’t want to miss this year’s conference or the speed dating as it promises to be hotly contested with 25 exceptional mobile startups in the region set to fight out to win market recognition and investor interest.

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1374

Chase Bank Kenya: Gold Sponsor for PIVOT East 2015

PIVOT East

July 16, 2015

Chase Bank Kenya has this year sponsored the PIVOT East 2015 “Start Up Pitching” Conference. Announcing the Gold Sponsorship, Head of Digital Banking, Eddie Ndichu spoke on the commitment of the bank towards innovation.
“At Chase Bank, we are consistently at the forefront of supporting and enabling the Youth and SMEs actualize their ideas into income earning ventures. It is for this reason that we are proud to be associated with these great innovations together with m:lab that will see young entrepreneurs’ innovative ideas become reality.”
This year’s startup pitching conference will be held on 22nd July at the Panari Hotel.
For Chase Bank, innovation is a crucial strand in their DNA. The bank was recognized as an innovative partner that meets the needs of SMEs. Chase Bank has been supporting tech entrepreneurship in the region in an effort to spur the SME market to move with the new global market trends; that is digital and knowledge -based.
Mobile banking has really grown and it is revolutionizing the banking system in Kenya. To keep up with the growing technology, Chase Bank has jumped on the bandwagon of mobile banking with their “Mfukoni App”. The app was awarded the Top Mobile Banking platform in East Africa last year. The mobile app is available on all devices and enables customers to open investment accounts, pay KRA tax, make cheque book requisitions, cheque deposits and stop cheque payments, international money transfers, insurance and utility payments, among other banking products and services securely and without any hurdles by simply using mobile phones.
PIVOT East is an initiative of m:lab East Africa – a consortium comprising iHub, eMobilis and University of Nairobi. This year’s conference aims to facilitate discovery and nurturing of the next wave of high potential mobile innovations into sustainable business, ensuring that mobile innovations are high in the agenda of regional, governments, corporates and development agencies for amplified development impact and to raise the quality of mobile startups in the region.
Other sponsors of the competition are; Making All Voices Count (MAVC) and Homeboyz. The media partners of the conference include; Disrupt Africa, Techmoran, Apps Africa and Kachwanya.com
 

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