Mozilla Start Up winners

Deaf Elimu among the winners at the inaugural Mozilla Africa Mradi Innovation Challenge

Three tech start-ups that is Getpayd, Deaf Elimu and Hali Halisi and three student innovators: Classify Me, Audred and Mama Pesa emerged as the winners at the inaugural Mozilla Africa Mradi Innovation Challenge.

Mozilla Student Winners

The challenge was a partnership between Mozilla Corporation and the Nairobi City County Government (NCCG) and was hosted at the Arboretum Park in Nairobi.

The three startups and student innovators were selected after an intensive pitching and selection process. The innovators received grants amounting to Ksh. 13 million and will get technical assistance to further develop their products and position themselves in the market.

The programme is designed to identify African tech entrepreneurs/startups and tech students who can benefit from an acceleration programme that will provide; technical support, access to grants and ultimately, market access for their products. The initiative is designed to promote innovation led by and grounded in the unique needs of users on the African continent.

H.E Sakaja A. Johnson noted, “Nairobi City County Government is working with Mozilla Africa Mradi to ensure that tech start-ups and innovators get access to grants and are enabled to access venture capital investments locally and globally”.

“From 2015 Mozilla has distributed over $20 million through fellowships and awards to support individual and collective actions that nurture unique innovations that benefit communities”, Said Mitchell Baker, CEO and Chairwoman of Mozilla Corporation.

One of the establishments of incubation hub at the Eastlands Library in Maringo Hamza Ward in Makadara supporting over 20 startups on investor readiness and coding for kids aged 7-13 years.

The Mozilla Africa Mradi Innovation Challenge was launched in Nairobi in May 2023 with a call to tech innovators in Africa to develop creative solutions for unique African needs.

The 2022 Kenya Start-Up Ecosystem Report by Disrupt Africa identified 308 active tech start-ups in Kenya, employing over 11,000 Kenyans.  The report further indicates that only 50% of these start-ups, the majority of which are Fintech start-ups, have undergone some form of acceleration or incubation.

According to Our Digital Economy Blueprint, Kenya is a regional leader in access to digital infrastructure. It is estimated that 55% of jobs in Kenya will rely on digital skills by 2030.