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Ugandan healthcare startup wins $25k at TechCrunch Battlefield Africa

Ugandan healthcare startup wins $25k at TechCrunch Battlefield Africa
December 12
07:27 2018

M-SCAN, a startup from Ugandan, has won the $25,000 grand prize for the TechCrunch Startup Battlefield Africa 2018.

The event, supported by Facebook, held in Lagos on Tuesday and featured a contest of top innovators and startups from eight African countries presenting pitches to a panel of judges and investors around the world.

The countries represented were Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South-Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

While 15 startups took the stage, M-SCAN, a company that develops affordable portable mobile ultrasound devices (ultrasonic probes), was crowned as sub-Saharan Africa’s most promising startup.

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Bettr, a virtual banking experience powered by a smartphone and data, was the runner up.

The judges noted that they were impressed by M-SCAN’s scalability potential to make many other medical access devices affordable in Africa, where mother and infant mortality is high.

According to Mike Butcher, editor at Large of TechCrunch, the strength of the entries confirms that there is no shortage of creative inventors and entrepreneurs in sub-Saharan Africa.

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“We are excited to showcase great startups that not only have the potential to produce an exit in the years to come, but which are also using technology to solve real-world problems in innovative ways, from healthcare to financial inclusion,” Butcher said.

“There is some world-class technology coming out of Africa, which promises to help drive prosperity across the continent and position it as an important player in the digital economy of the future.”

Speaking with TheCable, Ned Desmond, chief operating officer of TechCrunch, said the objective of the competition is to discover the best early-stage startup.

“The idea which is to find the best early-stage startup in Sub-Saharan Africa,” he said.

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“Every contest needs a winner, but the benefit for the 15 companies is the exposure they get on stage and the training they get before they go on stage.

“So, we get 450 applications for a show like this from countries across Africa and we picked 15 companies with huge potentials and then we trained them for quite a while.

“People around the globe are interested in what TechCrunch has discovered in Africa. In places like Nigeria, in another three years, there will be three times more founders who have raised money, who are successful, who can be of help to other young emerging founders.”

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