Within its strategic vision, the USAfBC is looking for innovative proposals that, through digital solutions, articulate stories of impact and clearly identify the challenges and actions to implement solutions in the digital space. The Digital Innovation Competition is open to entrepreneurs, startups, and independent innovators who have turned ideas into digital innovation to improve living conditions for Africans amid the pandemic.

To be eligible, an applicant (or their startup) must:

i. Be a startup or innovator with at least 51% African ownership

ii. Must be incorporated /registered with the appropriate country-based body, e.g., Nigerian Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC)

iii. Not be a government agency, public administration, political organization, or non-profit of any type Africa Digital Entrepreneurship Competition 2022

iv. Startup must be head quartered in one of the African Countries.

v. Startup must Not be older than five (5) years and not be part of a franchise brand or licensing agreements for distribution in a different country

vi. Not be a Business engaged in any illegal activity and not listed on the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Sanctions List

Evaluation/Selection Process

The evaluation process will be carried out in three phases:

PHASE 1 [all applicants]: Following their online submission, the applications will go through a first review round. This review will be carried out by appointed experts. This review starts with an eligibility and exclusion screening. The applicants that do not comply with these criteria (cf. section “2.0. Eligibility criteria) will not be further evaluated. The experts will evaluate the eligible applications based on the evaluation criteria (cf. section “3.1. Evaluation criteria”) and shortlist the 10 best-ranked applications, including regional champions for each of the sub-regions of Africa (North, West, Central, East and Southern Africa). The 10 shortlisted applicants will be notified about their qualification and invited to submit an executive summary (3-5 pages maximum) of their innovation and participate in Phase 2.

PHASE 2 [10 shortlisted finalists]: The 10 shortlisted finalists will be invited to pitch their idea in front of a panel of experts, including selected AmCham Representatives in Africa and Industry Leaders with experience and knowledge in the fields of digital transformation, digital services, and business strategies. The panel will carry out the evaluations, select the top 3 finalists for Phase 3.

PHASE 3 [ top 3 finalists]: The top 3 winners will be featured at the U.S.-Africa 2022 Africa Digital Economy Summit in December 2022, where the first, second, and third place winners will also be announced following a live voting by participants of the Summit. The two-minute video pitch of their product/innovation will also be featured. Results will be certified by an external accreditor.

Selecting the Winners

Each applicant will be evaluated by a panel of judges based on the pertinence of the idea being resolved, the quality of the innovation/service response, the business model, its scalability, the size of the market, and the clarity and persuasiveness of the two-minute video pitch. The selection and evaluation process of submissions shall be reviewed and accredited by an external certified reviewer. The winners of the competition will be determined by the judges’ ranking of the applicants based on a set of pre-determined criteria.