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African Startup Makes Waves Around the World


2019 has been a big year for Kenyan FinTech startup Asilimia. Not only is the payment and micro-saving platform for informal businesses one of only a handful chosen to participate in the prestigious Station F programme in Paris, it was also one of the top 10 startups from around the African continent to be selected to take part in Startupbootcamp AfriTech in Cape Town. Now, Asilimia has scooped the Africa Cup at the SA Innovation Summit, walking away with a R5 million (US$350,000) investment offer from the Unicorn Group and three weeks of acceleration in Silicon Valley, Lagos or Budapest.

The company’s Co-Founder and CEO, Tekwane Mwendwa, says: “This will aid us in empowering informal and small businesses in Kenya, Uganda and South Africa, as well as other countries, with the ability to build wealth or protect the minimal resources that they have by creating better financial instruments for them.”

He believes that one of the reasons behind Asilimia’s ability to be recognised by these institutions is due to the calibre of the team’s talent. “We have had the privilege of working with people from some of the world’s top intuitions such as Stanford, MIT and Cambridge University, amongst others, with each member of our diverse team being passionate about the company’s commitment to social impact.” Currently, the core crew is comprised of six members from Kenya, France and Slovakia but is looking to expand.

Additionally, Asilimia has proof of concepts with companies such as UAP Old Mutual in Kenya and Uganda. “They are interested in our company to solve their insurance distribution problem amongst the majority of Kenyan and Ugandan businesses which are informal as well as in reducing the costs of enabling these businesses to make micropayments.”

“Asilimia is at a crucial stage in its development as evidenced by our achievements this year, making now the ideal time to partner with us, invest in the business or become part of our team,” concludes Mwendwa.

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