Zim Startups!Check out this $25,000 innovation competition

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s U.S.-Africa Business Center (USAfBC), in partnership with U.S. Chambers of Commerce across Africa, hosts the annual African Startup Digital Innovation Competition each year.Every year, the competition rewards talented individuals Innovators, Entrepreneurs and Startups Support digital products and services that positively impact African citizens.

The 2022 winner will be Recognized in their homeland – and a $25,000 Cash Rewardamong Other non-cash prizes!

Target Industry

The competition will focus on three broad thematic areas:

  1. Fintech and Web Solutions: Digital movement covering data flow solutions, cross-border digital platform solutions, mobile technology, intellectual property management, cybersecurity, creative arts (film, music, arts).
  2. Sustainability and Supply Chain Solutions: Covering smart manufacturing, e-commerce, sharing economy management, digital supply chain improvement, e-commerce enterprise logistics solutions and agricultural technology (AgTech).
  3. Human Development and Social Services Solutions: Covers digital health solutions and e-learning platforms.


In-kind services may include laptops, annual subscriptions to digital platforms, mentoring and digital marketing/advertising services for the top three winners. The top three winners will also receive a virtual platform to communicate with mentors and participants during the Digital Economy Summit on December 7, 2022.

first prize

Grand Prize Package Total Value $25,000. which includes a $15,000 bonus, 6 months of tutoring with Fortune 500 technology companies and 1 year subscription to digital tools/platforms.

second prize

$15,000 Second Prize Package. Second prize includes $10,000 In terms of bonuses, a 6 months of tutoring Work with a tech company for 6 months Subscribe to Digital Tools/Platforms.

third prize

$10,000 Third Prize Package. The third prize includes $5,000 In terms of bonuses, a 3 months of tutoring Work with a tech company for 3 months Subscribe to digital tools/platforms.

5 Regional Championships

Five regional champions will be named and collected $5,000 In terms of bonuses, a Recognition Plaqueand enjoy 3 months of tutoring with companies within their subject areas.


In its strategic vision, USAfBC is looking for innovative proposals that illuminate impact stories through digital solutions and clearly identify challenges and actions to implement solutions in the digital space. The digital innovation competition is open to entrepreneurs, start-ups and independent innovators who turn ideas into digital innovations to improve living conditions for Africans amid the pandemic.

To be eligible, applicants (or their startups) must:

  • Be a startup or innovator with at least 51% African ownership
  • Must be registered/registered with the appropriate state agency such as the Nigerian Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC)
  • Not any type of government agency, public administration, political organization or non-profit organization Africa Digital Entrepreneurship Competition 2022
  • The headquarters of the startup must be located in one of the African countries.
  • Startups must not be older than five (5) years and must not be part of a franchise brand or licensing agreement for distribution in different countries
  • Not a business that engages in any illegal activity and is not on the U.S. Treasury Department sanctions list

Evaluation/Selection Process

The assessment process will take place in three stages:

Stage 1 [all applicants]: After being submitted online, the application will go through the first round of review. This review will be carried out by designated experts. The review begins with eligibility and exclusion screening. Applicants who do not meet these criteria will not be assessed further. Eligible applications will be assessed by experts based on evaluation criteria and shortlisted for the 10 highest-ranked applications, including regional champions from each of Africa’s sub-regions (North, West, Central, East and Southern Africa). The 10 shortlisted applicants will be notified of their eligibility and invited to submit an executive summary of their innovation (3-5 pages maximum) and participate in Phase 2.

Stage 2 [10 shortlisted finalists]: 10 finalists will be invited to present their ideas in front of a panel of experts, including selected representatives of the African American Chamber of Commerce and industry leaders with experience and knowledge in digital transformation, digital services and business strategy. A panel of experts will evaluate and select the top 3 finalists to advance to the third stage.

The third phase [ top 3 finalists]: The top 3 winners will be unveiled at the US-Africa 2022 Africa Digital Economy Summit in December 2022, where the 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize winners will also be announced after on-site voting by summit participants. A two-minute video pitch of their product/innovation will also be showcased. The results will be certified by an external certification body.

Applications for the Digital Innovation Competition will close on June 30, 2022, you can fill in the application form via the link here

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