About the Challenge
The Ecobank Fintech Challenge is a competition that looks for and teams up with Fintech companies in Africa that are ready to grow. It helps these companies by providing support and opportunities in Ecobank’s 35 markets across Africa. The main goal is to help them become successful Fintech stories that span across the whole African continent.
The Ecobank Fintech Challenge is open to all Fintech companies in Africa. If you have a Fintech product, you can apply by sharing information about your product and giving a demonstration. Your product should solve specific problems that people face.
The finalists who are selected get to take part in the exciting Ecobank Fintech Challenge Grand Finale. The winner of the 2023 competition will receive a big cash prize of $50,000. All the finalists also become part of the Ecobank Fintech Fellowship. This gives them the chance to explore deals, and partnerships, and work together with the Ecobank Group, which can be really beneficial for their growth.
The Ecobank Fintech Challenge welcomes participation from individuals and Fintechs across Ecobank’s 33 country ecosystems in Africa, provided they have financial products suitable for the African market.
- You have the option to apply with multiple products from your startup, but each product must be submitted separately using an individual application form.
- Submitting a demo is a mandatory requirement for the application. Failure to provide a demo will result in disqualification.
- The demo should effectively showcase the functionality and visual presentation of your product in action.
When you become a finalist of the Ecobank Fintech Challenge and inducted as an Ecobank Fintech Fellow, you are entitled to benefits and opportunities such as:
- Multinational Product Rollout: As an Ecobank Fintech Fellow, you have the incredible opportunity to integrate your fintech solution with Ecobank and potentially launch your products in over 30 markets across Africa. This means reaching a wider customer base and expanding your business to new countries.
- Integration with Ecobank: Being part of the fellowship program allows you to work closely with Ecobank and explore integration possibilities. This collaboration can provide access to Ecobank’s resources, expertise, and networks, enabling you to enhance your fintech solution and align it with industry-leading practices.
- Cash Prize: As part of the Ecobank Fintech Challenge, there is a chance to win a cash prize of up to $50,000 USD.
The Ecobank Fintech Challenge provides cash prizes to the top three winners.
The first-place winner receives $15,000,
The second-place winner receives $12,000, and
The third-place winner receives $10,000.
While the ultimate winner for 2023 will be awarded a cash prize of $50,000
This funding can be used to support and grow your fintech business.
Service Provider Partnerships:
Start-ups participating in the challenge have the opportunity to be selected by Ecobank as local partners in any of Ecobank’s 33 country ecosystems. This partnership can open doors for collaboration and business opportunities within Ecobank’s extensive network.
Access to Ecobank’s Pan-African Banking Sandbox:
As an Ecobank Fintech Fellow, you will gain access to Ecobank’s dedicated team to support API tests. This collaboration allows Ecobank to improve its products for the pan-African market while providing you with valuable insights and resources to enhance your fintech solution.
Access to Partner Network:
Being inducted as an Ecobank Fintech Fellow grants you access to a vast network of global and African accelerators, potential investors, and mentors. This network can provide guidance, support, and valuable connections to further develop and grow your fintech venture.
Integration with Ecobank’s Digital Offerings:
The Ecobank Fintech Challenge offers fintech the opportunity to potentially integrate its solutions with Ecobank’s existing digital offerings. This includes platforms such as Ecobank Omni, Ecobank eFSC, Ecobank Xpress, Ecobank Mobile APP or USSD, MasterPass™ QR, mVISA™ & mCash. Applicants are encouraged to pitch how their solutions can add value to these existing digital offerings, creating synergies and enhancing the overall customer experience.
- Mid-June 2023 Application opens
- 21 July 2023 Initial Shortlisting
- Mid-August 2023 Finalists Announcement
- Late September 2023 Innovation Fair & Grand Finale
- September – December 2023 Ecobank Fintech Fellowship
- November 2023 – April 2024 Commercial Partnership Exploration
The Ecobank Fintech Challenge is Interested in innovations in the following field:
- futuristic and Innovative fintech products that enhance the customer experience both online and at physical branches.
- Digital solutions using analytics, customer insights, and AI to provide tailored advertisements.
- Effective management of customer complaints through digital channels.
- Acceleration of the complaint resolution process.
- Digitization of the customer journey.
- Proactive support for customers.
- Personalized self-service options for customers.
- Defined reporting outcomes to measure the value of customer interactions.
- Cutting-edge solutions that improve the lending process for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
- Digital customer onboarding for consumers, SMEs/merchants, and investment banking.
- Increasing the size of our payment wallet across our network.
- Innovative solutions that enhance the lending process for SMEs.
- Providing a comprehensive view of customers’ and prospects’ financial activities with other financial institutions.
- Digitizing the lending journey for SMEs.
- Dynamic innovations in areas such as SME/merchant onboarding and payment integration.
- Tailored solutions for niche merchant aggregation in specific sectors.
- Facilitating mobile collections with merchants and synchronizing and consolidating with our Xpress point system.
- Digital solutions that improve the performance of our sales force.
- Solving challenges related to offline mobile-to-mobile payments in areas with limited network coverage (Dead Zones).
- Increasing the size of our payment wallet within the African context.
And also any other relevant groundbreaking solutions that have the potential to revolutionize banking and payments in Africa.
How to apply
* To apply click on the application link and sign up with any of your social media accounts listed on the page
* Applications can be submitted in either English or French
Types of opportunity: Funding
Deadline: 21 July 2023
Open to: Fintechs across Ecobank’s 33 country ecosystems
Organizer: Ecobank Group
For more information visit The Ecobank Fintech Challenge